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Students cross a flooded schoolyard in the Philippines, where deadly storms have drawn attention to survival skills. MANILA -- To better prepare for typhoons, hurricanes and other natural disasters, planners aren't only turning to high-tech early-warning systems and computer-simulated paths of destruction.
Villagers in northwest India, for example, have learned to protect themselves against earthquakes by using timber to frame small parcels of masonry; when a quake strikes, the wood flexes, reducing the risk of stone walls collapsing. Shutting down your house’s gas, electricity and water mains is not something you want to learn under duress. The lid that covered the main water line valve was covered with several inches of solid ice, and jammed, and my pounding wouldn’t loosen it.
In the event of a disaster, such as an earthquake or forest fire, you may be instructed to shut off your utility services, and there might be no one to help you.
On a non-emergency basis, keep a list of the phone numbers for your water, gas and electricity companies, and call them when a problem occurs.
Natural gas leaks and explosions are responsible for a significant number of fires following disasters, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
If you smell gas or hear a blowing or hissing noise, open a window and get everyone out of the house quickly, recommends Larry Rosok, spokesman for Cascade Natural Gas in Bend, Oregon. Shutting off the water when a break is detected can stop further damage while you wait for a plumber.
In newer houses, there should be a city water meter somewhere between the curb and the house. If a water valve is on city property, then a city employee must shut it off, unless there is an emergency, said Andrea McCullough, spokesperson for the city of Bend, OR. Generally, the city is responsible for the water main that runs down the middle of the street, and for the line that runs up to the curb, McCullough said. Since your water valve may be located below the surface of the ground, you may need a specialized tool. You may be asked to shut off your electricity in case of disaster, or you may need to cut off power because of internal flooding (the risk of electric shock exists any time water and electricity mix). For safety, FEMA recommends shutting off the individual circuits before shutting off the main circuit breaker. Leon Pantenburg is a wilderness enthusiast, and doesn't claim to be a survival expert or expertise as a survivalist. As a newspaperman and journalist for three decades, covering search and rescue, sheriff's departments, floods, forest fires and other natural disasters and outdoor emergencies, Leon learned many people died unnecessarily or escaped miraculously from outdoor emergency situations when simple, common sense might have changed the outcome. Leon now teaches common sense techniques to the average person in order to avert potential disasters.
After graduating from Iowa State University, Leon completed a six-month, 2,552-mile solo Mississippi River canoe trip from the headwaters at Lake Itasca, Minn., to the Gulf of Mexico. His wilderness backpacking experience includes extended solos through Yellowstone’s backcountry; hiking the John Muir Trail in California, and numerous shorter trips along the Pacific Crest Trail.



Some of Leon's canoe trips include sojourns through the Okefenokee Swamp and National Wildlife Refuge in Georgia, the Big Black River swamp in Mississippi and the Boundary Waters canoe area in northern Minnesota and numerous small river trips in the Midwest and Pacific Northwest. Since 1991, Leon has been an assistant scoutmaster with Boy Scout Troop 18 in Bend, and is a scoutmaster wilderness skills trainer for the Boy Scouts’ Fremont District. Leon earned a second degree black belt in Taekwondo, and competed in his last tournament (sparring and form) at age 49.
People living on the flood plains of Bangladesh construct homes and other buildings on raised mounds of earth for protection during floods. In the event of broken pipes after a deep freeze, you won’t want to be searching your front lawn for the shut-off valve while water pours from the broken pipe under your kitchen sink. On weekends or holidays, if you can’t contact a utility company technician, call the police non-emergency number. It is a really good idea is to know where the shut-off valves are and to have the correct tools to shut them down. Don’t use your phone, or touch or try to operate any electrical appliance or light inside the house. Locate the valve by looking for the square or rectangular bit of metal on your gas meter supply pipe that’s the tang. When you learn the proper shut-off procedure for your meter, share the information with your household. This box, typically in the garage, will probably have a lever on one side or on the top that shuts off the juice.
It is wise to teach all responsible household members where it is and how to shut off the electricity.
He is an enthusiastic Bluegrass mandolin picker and fiddler and two-time finalist in the International Dutch Oven Society’s World Championships. Disaster-prevention experts are paying more attention to indigenous warning systems across the world to stanch the massive loss of life from catastrophes such as the recent floods that devastated tracts of Manila, killing more than 300 people.
In Simeulue, an Indonesian island with 83,000 people off the coast of Sumatra, older residents teach new generations how to spot warning signs such as water being sucked out to sea after an earthquake -- an indication a tsunami is on the way. CERT educates individuals about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations.
I grabbed my coat and shoes, ran down to the garage, pulled out my water pipe shut-off wrench and headed for the street. Use an adjustable crescent wrench or pipe wrench to grasp the tang, and turn it clockwise a quarter-turn, until it is crossways to the pipe.
Every technique, piece of equipment or skill recommended on this website has been thoroughly tested and researched. Old-school warning methods often are easier and more accurate than advanced systems, they say, and have been tested in crisis after crisis. Only seven people died on Simeulue during the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004, even though the island stood right in the devastating waves' path.
Using training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT volunteers can assist others in their community following a disaster when professional responders are not immediately available to help.


If you don’t know where the breaker box is located or how to shut it off, call an electrician or someone who knows. The extremely low death toll resulted in large part from islanders' familiarity with warning signs, which led them to flee to higher ground in the minutes before the tsunami hit, according to a 2008 United Nations study.
CERT volunteers are also encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking an active role in emergency preparedness projects.Find Nearby CERT programs -- locate CERT programs by zip code and inquire about disaster training and volunteer opportunities near you!Register a CERT Program -- join over 2,600 registered CERT programs and register today!
Really appreciate that this was about real tactics not a bunch of Bear Grylls wanabe wilderness stuff copied right out of the U.S. The water was spurting out of the side of the house at the site of  the lawn sprinkler valves.
In many fast-growing urban areas in Asia, residents live in flimsy shanty-town dwellings where governments play little role in disaster preparedness. I found the section on crime, violence and SHTF defense especially helpful and something that I have never seen in any other survival book.
Maybe the people will wake up and leave any area that has such laws that doesn’t allow it own citizens to protect themselves. With the crazy laws in different states and what the cops can do to a non-native person, told my wife ,the other day, I am not leaving this state or area for anything. In my opinion, some of these devices can be valuable survival tools and shouldn’t be overlooked when hiking in the backcountry, or when preparing for an emergency.But what happens to those devices when they run low on power? Whenever it got cloudy, the iPhone would stop charging and I then had to unplug, and then replug the USB cord to get it going again. While this may seem trivial, I found the pocket turns this panel into the ultimate survival accessory for those who like to travel with electronic devices.If you’re looking for a great everyday carry kit, or something to carry in the backcountry, you might want to take a look at buying one of these panels. ONe thing is for sure, if I were going to rob someone’s house, or mug someone, it would not be one who is armed.
Take guns away and guess what one only ones with guns are bad guys who dont care about laws and police. I dont know about you but I can pull a gun and defend my self WAY faster than any cop of any police department can arrive at my house to defend me. I walked in the house got my gun and stood and waited another 36 mins for the cops to get there.
Along with everything else that uses transistors to work.The general intent, I think, of this article is to suggest that a bit of concern and interest should be focused into the area of using solar panels and rechargeable batteries.
Check out instructables dot com for some good ideas.Batteries are a very different subject. From my experience, Lithium Ion batteries, which include Lithium Cobalt, Lithium Manganese, Lithium Iron, Lithium Nickle cobalt, and Lithium Titanate all do well at first. They are sold online, in battery stores and motorcycle shops as they are getting very popular with the sport bike riders.



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