Lessons from Hurricane Matthew

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by Tempstar, Oct 16, 2016.

  1. Tempstar

    Tempstar Old and crochety Site Supporter+

    Hurricane Matthew ripped through last week doing lots of wind damage but even more flood damage. I worked at the TV station for most of the event and was able to travel a bit before during and after. I re-thought some of my planning after being able to see events unfold in real time.
    1- If you plan on generating power, have too much fuel on hand. Everyone sold out of generators and gas cans, but no power means no gas at the pumps. Fights were common at the few working gas stations after the storm as folks tried to gas up the generators.
    2- Get where you're going and stay there. We ventured out to get some equipment only to find trees and flooding had us trapped on the beach. Even worse, we had to detour several times just to get back because of trees that had fallen after we went through and in one case a bridge had washed out. This was scary because we had just been across the bridge 5 minutes before.
    3- Have food in the vehicle. Our chief engineer was trapped overnight and slept in his truck at a repeater site. He was in no danger but flood waters blocked him in. He said he was miserable because he had to make do with 1/2 bottle of water all night. And no food.
    4- Be protected. One of our staff was approached by two guys who were commenting that he must have plenty of gas in his truck. They broke it off when he reached behind his back like he had a weapon. He didn't but swears he will next time.
    5- It's true, stay out of flood waters. My 7500# truck was getting pushed sideways in about 2' of water going across a road. No way one could stay on their feet in it.
    6- Don't assume if you've never been flooded you can't be. Many homes were destroyed that were "not in flood prone areas".
    7- You are on your own. Don't expect anyone to come to your rescue during a storm. They can't and won't.
    Thankfully I had all my bases covered this time, plenty to eat, rain gear, lots of water, dry clothes, and plenty of fuel. I am making an extended run kit for my Honda generator so I only fuel it once a day instead of every 6 hours. Another oversight was a cover for my pack to keep it dry. I only had to transfer it between trucks but if I had to wear it it would have gotten soaked. If I have to go through another one, an electric chainsaw with the Honda generator will be in the truck along with a 100' extension cord. And my shotgun. I really have underestimated the entitlement society.
    kemps, AD1, ditch witch and 18 others like this.
  2. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Tempstar hit the nail on the head about the present society being not only without a clue on how to survive, totally dependent and not only expecting to share, ie take, your preps, but feel like they have the right to them and that you are being criminal in not sharing them. Doesn't look good for most of the USA if we have any major problems. Thank you for the heads up on your experiences and what you learned.
  3. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu RIP 4/19/2018

    You must have a lot of gas in that vehicle!


    You bet chure azzez, bee***!
    Seepalaces and Ura-Ki like this.
  4. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart Snow Monkey Moderator

    @Tempstar What were you using for Comms? I am sure others would be interested....
    Motomom34, Seepalaces, Ganado and 3 others like this.
  5. Tempstar

    Tempstar Old and crochety Site Supporter+

    Comms are TM-V71a, Vertex Standard DMR, 480 SAT. The repeaters are 1500' up the 2000' tower and had diesel backup, so comms were good. Cell service got really spotty as sites went down because of power loss. We used an old 460 repeater for the comms mostly, monitored SC EMD on HAM and HF, and NC and SC traffic on DMR system.
  6. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    Good lessons learned... thank you for sharing!!!
    sec_monkey, Sgt Nambu and Seepalaces like this.
  7. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    I had a few chances to experience things like this, Bosnia, Katrina, and The 9.0 Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan. The lessons I brought back were astounding to me, the things normal people will do after as little as 48 hours with out, really changed my images of being prepared. I was naive in thinking that I could be prepared and that no one would ever attempt to challenge me to what I had, or what they thought I might have! Rule #1, Always be armed! #2, always have a day or two more food and water then you think you will need! #3 always take a maxed out ammo load out! #4 Never offer any assistance to those that do not actually need it, you will run out of things really quick! #5 Make short hikes of less then 2 hours, and always find a good defensible hide! #6 only use your fuel and other supplies sparingly and never offer help with those needs unless you get a trade of equal or better for needful things! #6 Never compromise OPSEC when on the move, Once people see you, you are a target or a threat!
  8. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    Since your in a 7500# truck, I would have an gas chain saw and gas for it, Plus 20' of chain with hook's, At least you can clear one lane to get thru, A bridge out is a horse of a different color!
    Pack some heat, Its the only thing some people respect when in dire straits.
  9. Ganado

    Ganado Monkey+++

    AD1, Altoidfishfins and sec_monkey like this.
  10. Cruisin Sloth

    Cruisin Sloth Special & Slow

    I'd be nosy on the help range & see whos around !!!
    Pack & never underestimated the entitlement society.

    We have WAY to many .
    I have worked 60's to date & still
  11. Tempstar

    Tempstar Old and crochety Site Supporter+

    Oh, Mr. Glock 21 is always with me, even though policy says otherwise.
  12. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu RIP 4/19/2018

    Never try to defend your house/hide from within! You will be burned out! Fight outside, know good positions in your vicinity now!
  13. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Thank you for sharing @Tempstar
    I am curious about your pack cover. Will you be making your own? Details please :) I tried my bag on then put my rain poncho over it. It worked- ok but seemed to raise the back of the poncho out so that I think I would get wet.
    Ura-Ki and sec_monkey like this.
  14. svjoe

    svjoe Angry Monkey

    Cruised around my neck of the woods after the worst of the storm
    1. Chevy crewcab dually
    2. 30ft logging chain(snatch out stuck folks)
    3. chainsaw (clear trees in roadway)
    4. 5 gallon gas can(full) if somebody else needed it
    5. .45ACP
    AD1, Mountainman, Motomom34 and 2 others like this.
  15. marlas1too

    marlas1too Monkey+++

    bone and raised in fl. the first 18 years of life there. most peopel don't realise most of fl is at sea level but saying that always be prepared for the worst even here in wv. where the most is downed trees i still carry a chainsaw and a bow saw just in case also i always have 2 20 ft.chains too plus the ever present food and water box so be always prepared ps. I never leave home without arms
  16. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    You can find commercially made/available pack covers for pretty in expensive! I made mine of Rubberized fabric I picked up at Rose City Textiles up in Portland when I still lived there. It works out very well. I used seam tape on every thing and it has draw string closing top only, which sits under a built in dry bag that has "wings" added to cover the top opening even better!
    Motomom34 likes this.
  17. Tempstar

    Tempstar Old and crochety Site Supporter+

    My pack cover is USGI, the ones you see on the back of blazers and Broncos covering the spare tire. The pack itself is sprayed with silicone before going into service as is the pack cover. There is nothing short of rubberized gear that will stop all day constant rain. If I would have needed the pack outside all day, I would have dropped it into a black garbage bag and went on with life while carrying it. BTW, my pack is a small Voodoo Tactical with a quart of water and a days worth of calories, dry underwear,socks, and a tee shirt in a vacuum sealed bag, and a few other odds and ends. Plus, the trash bag will float the pack if I need to, but never have.
    AD1 and Motomom34 like this.
  18. Witch Doctor 01

    Witch Doctor 01 Mojo Maker

    Keep you cell charged... a portable solar panel can handle this task or your genie.
    DOT can help with road closures, or face book.. ( I know but the wife used her account to check on some roads.. There is only one that can get you north from my AO)
    Watch out for Idiots... the proliferate during emergency situations...
    The worse kinds of Buzzards will stop by and give you bids on your repairs and try to scam you out of your cash...
    Help your neighbors... who knows you might end up with a couple of steaks on the grill...
    If you treat the repair crews to some goodies you might bet bumped up on the repair list...

    FEMA Who?
  19. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu RIP 4/19/2018

    Everything in that pack should be in plastic bags, and in a trash bag for every major compartment! Don't forget extra bags! ;)

    BTW, My frame pack included a very nice outer cover! It's an Alp Engineering brand!
    Motomom34 likes this.
  20. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu RIP 4/19/2018

    If you prep, FEMA is not your friend!
    Gator 45/70 and Motomom34 like this.
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