A preview of a SHTF event

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by Minuteman, Jan 13, 2007.

  1. Minuteman

    Minuteman Chaplain Moderator Founding Member

    I had a preview of what a SHTF event would be like. I had to go to the hardware store day before yesterday. The news has been warning of a major ice storm in our area with possible power outages.

    I was in Lowes and noticed that they had a large stock of portable generators and kerosene heaters stacked up in the main aisle. As I went about getting the things I needed for some home repairs, I noticed nearly everyone was buying heaters, bundles of wood, wood burning stoves, lamp oil, kerosene. And the place was packed.

    I had to go back later that afternoon and everything was gone. All the generators, all the kerosene, and they only had two of the 10,000 btu kerosene heaters left. They were half off the normal price so I picked one up. As I was walking away there were two guys fighting over the last one.

    We, my Daughter and I, then went to Wal-mart to pick up a few groceries before heading home. The place was a mad house. People were crowding every aisle, some with two and three carts. I saw case after case of bottled water, canned and dry goods.

    I walked by the aisle that had the oil lamps and it was chaos. The shelves were empty and there was broken glass on the floor. I asked the kid cleaning up the mess what happened and he said that people were fighting over the last of the lamps and several got dropped and broken. he said all of the lamp oil had sold out in a few hours.

    Over at the sporting goods it was the same story. All the lanterns, lantern fuel, Coleman stoves etc were gone.

    We got what few things we needed and left. On the way home I was telling my Daughter how most people are not prepared for even the simplest emergencies. And how we prepare for anything so that we don't have to scramble around like idiots everytime there is a crisis.

    When we got home I decided to give my daughter a little emergency preparedness drill. We went around and got things ready. Filled the oil lamps, the heater, fueled up the generator, and even tho we really didn't need to, I had her fill all the water cans and fill the bathtubs with water. I can hook my well pump up to the generator and pump water, but I wanted her to be capable if I wasn't here during an event.

    It was an eye opening experience for her. Seeing how people are so unprepared. I think she has grown up with our preparedness and just taken it for granted.

    It never ceases to amaze me how many people are so woefully unprepared. Especially those who live in areas like we do where ice storms and tornados are a common occurance.
  2. hk45shooter

    hk45shooter Monkey+++

    I know what you mean, while I was in Lowe's yesterday picking up my heater (pre-paid online Mon.), I saw pretty much the same thing.

    But in everyone elses eyes, I looked just like them cause of what I was picking up. Just so happened that the storm was coming down the day I told them I would be picking up my order.[doh]
  3. ozarkgoatman

    ozarkgoatman Resident goat herder

    We see this on the news and sit in our living room next to the nice warm wood stove and laugh. [LMAO] It's just so pathetic how easiely people panic.[notfunny]
  4. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    I had a case like this about 5 years ago -- prior to my implementing any preparedness plans. There was a large power outage near cleveland that knocked the power out on the grid for almost 5 days. The first thing to go...all canned goods and water from the grocery store. ATMs....no electricity = no cash. I had to drive 40 miles north from where I live to find electricity and and ATM and a grocery store to get bottled water.

    I told my wife that would never happen again. There is cash in the safe, enough food to get through an emergency. The only thing I am lacking for a winter power outage is wood for my fireplace.
  5. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Something I would be curious about would be how many if any of the folks who were late and couldnt get the stuff knew how to substitute or how many chose to early or late. Stuff like that while it is a little dirtier, desil fuel is just a slightly lower grade of kerosine and lamp oil. How many of them figured out that they could make their own oil lamps? The do somke more and are not as pretty but just a mason jar with a slit in the metal lid and a wick in it filled with desil fuel works just fine as an oil lamp in a pinch or if you want/need a bunch of them cheap. Another deal would be after the coleman fuel was sold out, I wonder how many folks knew they could get the same stuff in the hardware department packaged as 'naptha' alongside the paint thinners?

    I know even before I conciously started preping I never realy had much need to run to the stores when something was comeing as far as a storm or some such that might be a problem for a few days. The only time I was caught unprepaired to a point of needing more for an event was that when we had a BIG ice storm several years ago and most of KC was in the dark for a couple of weeks, I had to borrow a generator from my dad to power our fridge and freezer. We already had propane bottles, camp stoves and flower pots for heat, plenty of food and were on gravity fed water.
  6. ridgerunner58

    ridgerunner58 Monkey+++


    Thanks for the info,although I have been prepping for years the thought of using mason jars with a wick never crossed my miind---neither did naptha for coleman fuel.
  7. HomesteadMommy

    HomesteadMommy Monkey+++

    Was that the blackout of 2003? It hit us up here in Ontario also. Our area didn't see any big panics. I was surpised by that. We lived in an apartment at the time but had enough supplies on hand to make it ok for a while. Hardest thing was to keep cool in the heat and keep the freezer from thawing. We were lucky and didn't loose anything and spent most of the time out side in the shade. It took the grocery stores a few days to get back up genarators and open up again. It took them a while to clean out all the freezer/produce sections and restock them also. If I remember it was over a week before they had it restocked. Because everyone else needed full shipments also.
  8. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    We are set to ride out a few weeks in the event of a total shut-down and have had to do this on a few occassions but it seems like last-minute trips to the store still happen..LOL..at least most is for the luxuary rather than necessity.
  9. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    We can all probably use just a little more. It doesn't hurt to top off the supplies and the fuel tanks. [winkthumb]

    Thanks for the info on the naptha and the home made lanterns Monkeyman. This is our site at it's best. Sharing information.
  10. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Gallon cans of Naptha are also mucho cheaper than buying zippo fluid.

    I hate when I find myself in the store on a regularly scheduled trip only to find a mad house of chaos. It usually lets me know a storm is coming.

    We are set for months here - maybe a year without re-supply. The luxuries are just that.
  11. RightHand

    RightHand Been There, Done That RIP 4/15/21 Moderator Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I wish I could say I might have a year's supply but that isn't the case. I could probably last 2 to 3 months without a harvest of my own but not much more. More work on the supplies is always needed.
  12. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    That is bare bones. The luxuries comment meant none to speak of. Didn't look right when I re-read it.
  13. ozarkgoatman

    ozarkgoatman Resident goat herder

    Unleaded gas can be used in coleman lanterns as well, I've never bought coleman fuel and used the lanterns for years.
  14. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Depending on the lantern/stove unleaded gas will eventualy mess up the generator in them but it will work for some time in a pinch. The naptha is actualy the same stuff as the zippo fluid and coleman fuel (exact same stuff) just with a different lable, like buying generic.

    We have had a bunch of snow and ice around here the last few days and everyone is sold out of icemelt and rock salt. Not to many folks have figured out that they can go to the feed store/elevators and get loose mineral salt (suplement for the cattle) all day long for about $8 or so for a 50 pound bag and it works just as well if not better for melting the ice.
  15. RightHand

    RightHand Been There, Done That RIP 4/15/21 Moderator Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Speaking of ice melt, I use the fertilizer Urea which is available at reasonable prices at the local farm store in 20# - 40# bags.
  16. ozarkgoatman

    ozarkgoatman Resident goat herder

    I have heard that before, but I have used it for years and have seen others do the same for longer. [dunno]

  17. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Yup, from what I have understood from folks who have done it (includeing those who have had problems) the ones not specificaly set up for unleadedgas will run on it any way but if you are useing it on a reagular (nearly daily basis) then after several months to a few years it clogs them up or some such.

    Its not that it wont work if its all you have acess to, just wouldnt be my advice to store unleaded gas for them unless you were also storeing spare parts.
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