Managing Multiple Crisis at Once

Dear Fellow Survivalist;

I just had the unique experience of going through a hurricane, while already dealing with another crisis. Just to avoid confusion, the other crisis I’m referring to is the COVID-19 pandemic, which has been really bad in my city the last few weeks. Fortunately, the other ongoing crisis that the nation is dealing with, violent rioting, hasn’t touched my city.

Even so, my city was featured on nationwide news as the city with the fastest growing COVID-19 rate just a couple of weeks ago. It isn’t quite that bad now, but it was as we were preparing for the hurricane.

Being the first time I’ve had to deal with multiple crises at the same time was an interesting experience. I’m happy to report that my wife and I came though it fine, without a scratch. But it could have been quite different. Dealing with multiple crises at one time is challenging to say the least. It requires balancing the needs of both crises, without forgetting about what you have to do for either of them.

A few lessons I learned from this experience:

  • Local governments are totally unprepared to deal with multiple disasters at one time. They have enough trouble trying to deal with just one. In order to deal with a second disaster, they usually have to set the first aside for the moment, so that they can focus on the second. Once that has passed, they return their attention to the first one. Should there be two long-term disasters occurring simultaneously, they would have to divide their attention, meaning that they would be ineffective in dealing with either.
  • While it is important to take care of our families first, we should also be good neighbors. The disasters we face are most likely not going to be TEOTWAWKI events where we right everyone else off. Being a good neighbor means helping people out; not at the cost of your own family’s well-being, but in addition to taking care of your family.
  • We can’t count on the supply chain (not like that’s any surprise). People will panic and buy out the grocery store for a second disaster, even when their homes are still full of everything they bought for the first.
  • With that being the case, we should buy things when we see them, rather than based just on a preconceived idea of our normal stocking level. This is especially true with things we are using to get through an ongoing disaster. Don’t wait until you need it; but it now.
  • It is important to keep our stockpiles filled. As we are using the things in them to get through a disaster, we should be looking for ways of restocking those items. That may mean restocking with a similar item that we can use in place of the first. That’s fine; just as long as we have what we need to, so that we can keep our families safe.
  • We can’t stop doing what we need to for the first disaster, just because there is a second one. For example, we can’t stop wearing masks and social distancing in order to rescue someone whose car is stuck on a flooding street. It may be necessary to get close to them to perform the rescue; but then go back to social distancing immediately.
  • It’s a good idea to assume that anyone you help is not going to be prepared, so be prepared for them. Going back to the same example of recuing someone whose car is stuck, have a mask to give them, so that you aren’t put at risk.
  • If you think you need something for disaster preparedness, buy it; don’t wait, just do it. There’s probably some reason why you’re thinking you need it, even if you can’t articulate that reason. It may be intuition. Regardless of the reason or lack of reason, if you think you need it and you can afford the purpose, trust that there’s a reason you think that and spend the money.
  • Keep cash on hand. Sometimes we forget that the electronic banking system which powers our credit and debit cards can break down in a storm.
  • When one of the disasters ends, take stock of where you are. More specifically, look at how that has affected your reaction to the first disaster. Are you still on track? Do you still have the supplies you need? Is there anything you stopped doing, which you need to reinstate?

Other than those things, managing multiple disasters really isn’t much different than managing one disaster at a time. Just think of it in terms of being a larger disaster. Any TEOTWAWKI event is going to create multiple “sub-disasters” that we need to deal with, all at the same time. So look at it that way and take it as training for the day when the brown stuff really hits the fan.

In the mean time, remember that you can make it through. Just be sure to keep your powder dry and your survival gear close at hand.

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