Our personal resilience is built on two things:
Being prepared to take advantage of opportunities that come our way.
and being prepared to deal with the inevitable chaos that enters our lives.
The more we know and the more diversified our skill set, the more prepared we will be to recognize and take advantage of opportunities. When we prepare for emergencies the first step is to understand our risks and the probability of something happening. That way we know what we need to prepare for.
In Hawaii our major risks are wildfire, flash floods, earthquake, tsunami and hurricanes. Hurricanes are by for the most damaging. Historically, a major hurricane has hit Hawaii every 10 to 20 years. With warming oceans, the forecast is for the hurricane threat to increase in both frequency and severity. Last year, we had 15 tropical storms and hurricanes pass within 100 miles of our islands. One hurricane hit the big Island of Hawaii and caused extensive damage. The power was out in some areas for over a month.
Hurricanes are by far the greater threat to Hawaii, and if you’re ready for hurricane, you’re ready for anything. Recognize that if you live in an older home a category three hurricane is going to destroy it. You will need to go to a shelter and you will need to go early, because they are are going to fill up quickly. You will need to bring everything you’ll need including food, water, medicine, clothing, blankets and sanitary supplies. You may be supplied a cot and enough space to walk around it, but your supplies will need to be stored under your cot. Have a go bag prepared for each family member with everything you will need. You will not have time to gather your supplies when the storm is bearing down.
After the storm, you should be prepared to camp out until your home can be rebuilt. I know I want to be able to live on my property to secure it against vandals and looters. You will need to be able to have food and medicine for at least a month. Water is going to be critical. You will need a gallon of water per person per day which means you must be able to store 120 gallons for a family of four. The Board of Water Supply is not going to be able to pump water to their tanks until the power is restored. Plan on the power being out for a week to 10 days or even longer if you live in and isolated area.
Gas stations are not going to be able to pump gas, and ATM machines are not going to be working. You’re going to need enough cash to buy the supplies you need until power is restored.
Don’t forget, you don’t just want to survive. You want you and your family to be as comfortable as possible.
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