"Bulletin #EMC228 raised some excellent questions, some that I have been considering and preparing for. I'd like to share some of the solutions we've implemented here.
1. Water availability: Water is our top necessity. Although we have a good developed spring, these are known to have failed during earthquakes. We store 100 gallons of potable water in thick plastic 50 gallon drums as a fallback position. Additionally both at home and as part of our response gear I have "British Berkefeld" gravity water filtration units. These will filter out practically all bacteria, viruses, guardia, and organic chemicals using a combined carbon block/ceramic filtering media and our units (SS2, SS4) are capable of filtering 12 and 24 gallons of water a day. Katadyn, Pur, and First Need are other commonly available brands of proven effective water filtration equipment.
2. Fuel Availability: I keep some treated gasoline stored on-site. This has been preserved with either Stabil or Pri-G brand fuel stabilizing additives. Additives may not be necessary if fuel is rotated (used/replaced) every 6 months. I keep a Holley high volume 12 volt electric fuel pump outfitted with 10 feet intake/output hoses and 25 foot electrical leads with a fused cigarette lighter plug on the end. These are stored in a 5 gallon plastic bucket ready to pump fuel to or from our storage containers. Antistatic precautions must be observed for safety's sake.
3. Food: We have anticipated that in a major disaster food and commonly needed items may not be readily available OR may be needed for the less prepared/fortunate. I store at least a 3 month supply of food and supplies such as vitamins, toilet paper, paper towels, batteries, coffee (and filters!), propane, and medical supplies. The foods chosen do not require refrigeration are primarily common canned goods and include things like stews, meats, soups, chili, tuna, vegetables, pasta, fruits, and aseptic packaged milk and juices. Additionally "comfort foods" for the kids such as puddings, cakes, candy, cocoa, and powdered beverage mixes were deemed important. All these items were selected to be "shelf-stable" for a minimum of 1 year. Information on the storage life of foods is available as a FAQ at: www.providenceco-op.com.
Don Kulha, Sonoma County CA ACS, Russian River Response Area California, responded to Bulletin EMC228 "Are We Prepared?" with interesting information which you may find of interest:
(end of first portion of Don's information. Continues next week.)
The Bulletins are addressed to the Emergency Management Agency (with sub-addresses to others) with the intent that the Radio Officer, ACS Coordinator or other unit participant will deliver them to the agency coordinator, and discuss their topics.