A new storm is set to strike the U.S. today, but we are supposed to get rain, whihc will be a nice change. Of course, at our altitude, that may be snow, but it’s nice to see a storm forecast where we aren’t in the midst of it. I’m sure the rest of the East Coast feels the same.
Just because it is missing my area, however, doesn’t mean the storm is without consequences. It looks like the Midwest will suffer the brunt of the storm which will bring dangerous levels of ice and freezing rain, followed by snow. An artic blast will drop temperatures 10 to 30 degrees below average from Texas all the way up to Minnesota and the Dakotas. These plunging temperatures could cause more problems with the supply of both electricity and natural gas in Texas, which is under a winter storm watch, as are Oklahoma and Arkansas. As we saw almost a year ago, as electric heaters fight to keep houses and commercial buildings warm, it can strain the electric generation and distribution system.
Blackouts are part of the third-worldization of the U.S. Blackouts, brownouts, empty shelves, failing bridges, violent street protests are all part of the United States’ slow decline from first world to third world. Worse yet, this collapse in our standard of living is being brought to use by our politicians.
Snow Impact Varies
Place like Illinois, Minnesota and the Dakotas are used to and know how to handle snow. Places like Texas don’t. Drivers don’t have snow tires or chains. The residents don’t have experience driving in the snow. Municipalities don’t make a heave investment in snow removal or road treatment. As a result, half an inch of snow can wreak havoc on highways in places that rarely see snow. If you live in the South, my advice is to stay home when a storm is expected.
Many people in the South don’t even have cold-weather clothing and don’t plan appropriately. We saw this when I95 ground to a halt in Virginia a few weeks ago, leaving people stranded in their cars for up to 18 or even 24 hours. Just because you haven’t gotten stuck in your car yet doesn’t mean you won’t one day. Plan accordingly.
Did People Learn from the Last Disaster?
Learning from small emergencies and making improvements in your plans is a key component of being a prepper. Telling yourself that what happened before was a fluke and could never happen again is not only a feeble excuse, it is tempting fate. It will be interesting to see if people in Texas learned from last year’s massive power failures, resulting in frozen pipes, and weather-related deaths.
For example, adding a 10,000 kilowatt or larger generator and a transfer switch would be a good way to assure continued heat and electric in the absence of grid power. If any of our Texas friends took these steps, a gentle reminder to keep your generator outside and point the exhaust away from your house. Not only will this save you from carbon monoxide poisoning, the generator will sound quieter, too.
Installing a wood stove and having a large stack of firewood would be another alternative. OK, parts of Texas aren’t ideal firewood country, but you could install a pellet stove and buy a pallet of pellets.
While a solar generator lacks the power to heat your house, it can keep small appliances running and a few lights operating. You could then use a propane heater to keep warm.
The point is, do something to improve the results if you experience a repeat of last year. Have a plan, including knowing how to turn off the water and drain pipes. They have proven it many times that people who have a plan do far better in emergencies than those who don’t. Those who have a plan jump into action. Those that don’t panic or get numb and do nothing.