Tuesday, February 20, 2018


Episode 136: Season 4 ep. 12

Battle for the South continues as Master Sergeant Bennet make his way north to Dallas. He reflects upon the changes the government instituted to handle a natural disaster of this magnitude. Here to talk to us today about socialism, the theory and the application, is Johnny Jacks author of Absolute Anarchy and Islam Rising.

Listen to the Audio Podcast

Featured Quote:

"He watched the simplicity of life going on before his eyes and wondered why he had never been content with a life like that."

Subscribe to The Changing Earth Podcast

If you have an IRA, 401(k), or Retirement Account and want to learn how you can protect your financial future from a pending dollar collapse, then this will be the best gift you ever receive.
Socialism Lessons from Johnny 

Socialism has multiple meanings, depending on who you ask. Johnny wrote a detailed article on this topic at AbsoluteAnarchyBook.com. In general people usually equate the term socialism to the results of societies operating under a socialist economic system. 

There are three basic economic models. Socialism's umbrella includes concepts like Marxism and Communism. In all of these economic models all property is collectively owned and delivered to the individual citizens as determined by a governing dictator or board. Fascism allows for individual ownership of property and the engaging in private business but only with the authorization of a governing board or dictator. In a pure capitalistic society there is little to no government. The individual can engage in business without government interference. There would be no licenses, no minimum wage, no government regulation, no public services like police and fire departments, etc. 

With pure socialism, the state provides for the working class. No one owns private property and there is no commercial enterprise because all of the businesses are state owned. People cannot acquire anything. People can't privately own a home, a company, a service industry, or accumulate any personal wealth. Everyone is a government employee and there is no unemployment.

Socialism sounds like a great idea in theory. Extremely poor people get brainwashed into supporting socialism because they believe it will improve their economic standing. This economically challenged class of people believes under this system there will be more equality. 

The theory behind socialism began in 1796 when Gracchus Babeuf wrote the Manifesto of Equals. He was tired of the tyranny of the French monarchy and envisioned an egalitarian system where all labor and commerce is shared equally. A German philosopher, Karl Marx, expanded the theories of Babeuf in 1848 when he wrote Manifesto of the Communist Party. One of his favorite sayings was from each his own according to his ability and to each his own according to his needs. This Manifesto is the basis for redistribution of wealth that is sometimes called for here in the United States.

Marx's Manifesto was a direct attack on capitalism and class warfare. He wanted the people to hate the rich and eliminate there power. When you historically reference this Manifesto, the motivation behind writing it becomes clear. Back then, there was no middle class. An individual was either wealthy or not and there wasn't much chance of moving up in the class system. The system they operated under was not true capitalism. It was a polluted system that relied upon colonialism to take large amounts of wealth from elsewhere to prop up the imperialistic governments. 

Socialism has many perceived benefits. Socialism is supposed to take care of the people. The rewards are supposed to be equal for everyone. However, the results of implementing socialism often have the opposite effect. Socialism takes away personal incentive to create new things and achieve more as an individual. Socialism eliminates the middle class and enslaves the working class. Venezuela is a great example of what happens when socialism is applied as a countries economic mode. In 1970 Venezuela was one of the wealthiest countries in South America. The government imposed price controls on food, making it more expensive to grow food then it could be sold for. Now they have no food. There is fighting in the streets and it is a virtual apocalypse.

Socialism is very hard to get out of once you are caught up in it.

Some individuals in the United States of America believe that because we already pay taxes for the fire department, police services, road repair, etc., switching the US economic system to a socialist one would not be any different. However, once you employ a socialist model, you can no longer own any personal property or engage in any personal business transactions. This would be a radical shift from the current system in the United States.

Most US citizens believe that we are operating under a capitalist system but this is also a fallacy. In the United States you can own a private business and personal property but the government controls how you do that. You may have a great idea for a business but will the government won't allow you to operate until you have jumped through a myriad of permitting requirements. You can have personal wealth but the more wealth you amass the more taxes you will pay to the government to ensure the safety of the accumulated property. The system described above is not a capitalist one but rather a fascist economic model. The United States government is on the road from a fascist model to a socialist one already. The government already owns about thirty five major businesses, including: The United States Postal Service, Amtrak, VA Hospitals and medical facilities, The Federal Prison Industries, Fannie Mae, Freddy Mac, the FDIC, the Tennessee Valley Authority, etc.

The United States was founded under the belief of little to no federal government intervention to maintain the unity of individual states. The states composing the United States of America were supposed to be free to govern their state citizens and business activities how they saw fit. If a citizen of that state was unhappy they could always relocate to another state where the believes were more of a match to their own. Currently the federal government has imposed themselves through various government institutions into every facet of an American's life down to the content that is taught in schools. Capitalism coupled with a deep routed personal values is what made America great.

The shift towards more federal government intrusion began with the progressive movement in 1890. The industrial revolution was in full swing. Many horrific social problems resulted from the explosion of industrializing work activities. People were made to work in unsafe work environments, they used child labor, the sanitary conditions were deplorable, and labor practices worked individuals to the bone. Many individuals may argue, "Well, that's capitalism," but they are wrong. The social problems that arose were a result of capitalism. There were many positive features as well, including increased production of food and products, income for many families, and revolutionary ideas that skyrocketed the development of today's technology.

At that time, there was no doubt that big business needed to be kept in check. They were not being socially responsible and the development of business monopolization started producing unfair product pricing. In 1895 the Sherman Antitrust Laws were passed to give the executive branch of the federal government the power to intervene into private business. Theodore Roosevelt put these laws into action to prevent monopolization of a market. The progressive movement did make many social gains for American workers and American business owners gave away their freedom to conduct business to the federal government for the first time. President Roosevelt believed in big business but also felt they needed more supervision. Regardless of the historical reasons this was the beginning of federal government intrusion into business. He passed more antitrust laws and started the move towards fascism in the US. The executive branch was given authority to overextend its constitutional parameters to address these social problems.

Future presidents continued to fuel the journey towards a fascist economic system. Woodrow Wilson was a major contributor. He made radical changes, including: creation of the Federal Reserve, the Federal Trade Commission, a Federal Tax system, as well as instituting an eight hour work day. Warren Harding was another president that continued the fascist trend. He signed the first national welfare bill in 1929: The Promotion of the Welfare and Hygiene of Maternity and Infancy Act, or the Sheppard–Towner Act. He got the federal government involved in agriculture by exempting farms co-ops from the anti trust acts. He regulated meat packing, farming activities and created farm credits. These credits allowed farmers to grow more than demand was calling for. 

Governor Roosevelt (left) and Al Smith (right)
Franklin D. Roosevelt was a socialist and a major player in moving the United States towards fascism. He took office when the country was in the Great Depression after the 1929 stock market crash. FDR went to work creating socialist programs to "rebound" the country. Many of his ideas were not supported at first but his ability to sweet talk the people and hold the country in a status quo earned him many elections. He eventually packed the supreme court with members that would support his vision of a socialist United States. He established over 100 government agencies and a lot of this was done without the approval of congress, setting a new standard for the future activities of the executive branch of government. His actions sucked the money out of the economy that would have funded economy expansion, but instead fueled the expansion of the executive branch of government. 

Lyndon B. Johnson continued the march towards fascism. He took office after Kennedy was assassinated. LBJ created the "Great Society" program. This involved taking all State and Local Welfare programs and placing them under federal indirect control. The federal government collected the State welfare program money and would return it to the states as long as the state's followed federal guidelines. This gave the executive branch the power to regulated these programs and administration costs skyrocketed, increasing the demand for more tax dollars.

The United States needs to be very careful about the path they are choosing to walk down. Even though the socialist theory calls for equality this will never be possible. Basic human nature causes all humans to have different hopes and dreams. We all have an individual drive to achieve different goals. We all have various reasons why we get up and motivate ourselves to live through another day. Socialism removes the desire to achieve and innovate because as an individual you can achieve nothing. It won't enrich your financial standing or provide you with a better future. Your future will be provided to you by the federal government. We can see clear results of that happening in United States Society today. Welfare recipients often form a life geared towards receiving their next welfare check. It has promoted a subculture of individuals reliant upon the government for existence. They are not motivated to improve their lives because there is no cause to do so. A socialist system will eventually fail. The countries dept skyrockets as manufacturing and product production decreases and tax revenues fall with it. Over one half of immigrants coming into the United States of America become reliant upon the welfare system for substance. With no incentive to get off of the welfare system the country becomes further strained to maintain its dept ratios.

There has never been another country that has innovated and achieved a standard of living that capitalism built in the United States of America. The Nationalist Socialist Party (NAZI) in Germany advanced innovation under the label of Socialism. However, they too were a fascist government that controlled private business with a heavy government hand. It may be argued that China or Russia made many new technological advances. However, most of the time the ideas they revolutionized were theories stolen from other inventors that were realized in these countries.

It is time for a reversal of federal government intrusion. The blame between government, corporations and the citizens needs to come to an end. We can not change the past but we can ensure a better future for future generations of Americans. Right now they will be slaves to an ever increasing national debt. A president should not have the power to make a country great again on his own. Making America great again will only happen through government streamlining, corporate responsibility for its actions and a resurgence of personal values based upon innovation and charity.

Johnny's Writing References

Johnny Jacks

Johnny Jacks is a product of WWII. Born in Alabama in 1944 five months before D-Day to semi-literate sharecropper parents. In the 1940s and early 1950s, he lived self-reliantly, off-grid, off city water, without indoor plumbing, and without assistance from a welfare state, which, of course, didn’t exist in those days.

On his seventeenth birthday, Johnny enlisted in the Air Force, later transferring to the Army, where he became a Special Forces soldier, a Green Beret, and began a career serving on Special Forces A-teams in Europe, Asia, and Central America, including an assignment to Special Forces A-team 102 in Vietnam in 1967 and 1968. He has lived or spent extended amounts of time in third world areas in Asia, Central and South America, and Africa, interfacing with people who live on the edge of survival.

After retiring from the Army in 1982, he worked for several government agencies over the next twenty-five years in significant positions involving high-level national security and emergency preparedness programs. These positions provided him with knowledge of continuity of government and continuity of operations at the senior level of national leadership.

This combination of off-grid, self-reliant living; guerrilla warfare expertise; and national security policy, which gives him a unique insight into today’s individual and group prepper survival needs and requirements.

Johnny wrote Absolute Anarchy, The Preppers Guide to Surviving the Coming Collapse. Absolute Anarchy is available on Amazon, in paper and Kindle versions, and is the most comprehensive prepper information resource available today.

The books website, AbsoluteAnarchyBook.com, contains a gateway to a large set of web links related to each chapter that vastly expands upon the book’s instructional information. The first four chapters and the supplemental reading are posted on the website.

Johnny is currently making the final editions to Islam Rising, the first in a series of dystopian novel that he will release in November of 2017.

Sara F. Hathaway
Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster and Without Land. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Post Collapse Abdominal Injuries

Episode 135: Season 4 ep.11

The journey continues in Battle for the South, as Vince and Erika try to help the stranded patients at the hospital in Houston. This week Dr. Joe Alton a.k.a. Dr. Bones, author of The Survival Medicine Handbook, is here to discuss abdominal injuries and what we can do, if anything to help the injured.

Listen to the Audio Podcast

 Featured Quote:
Abdominal Injury Lessons from Dr. Joe Alton
Abdominal injuries are on of the most complex issues in a post collapse situation. There are many organs that can be affected by this type of injury. The most important thing to know is how the injury was sustained. 

Currently about 75% of abdominal injuries are blunt trauma that occur from car crashes. Many penetration injuries also occur from knives and bullets. There are both soft and solid organs that can sustain damage. The solid organs like the kidney, liver and spleen are more likely to bleed if injured. The hollow or soft organs like the intestines and stomach will spill their contents into the abdomen if ruptured. 

If you sustain an abdominal injury is is a long, painful way to die. If you are bleeding you will die faster and this may be for the better. If something ruptures a doctor needs to go into the abdomen and close up the organ. If not you will swell up like a balloon and suffer a horrific fate. These days our technology allows us to conquer many abdominal problems but in a post collapse society this may not be possible. Abdominal injuries must be constantly watched. They usually don't show up right away. Once they progress the abdomen will become bloated and rigid. 

A good way to tell if there is blunt force trauma to the abdomen following an injury like a car crash is to check if there are visible marks on the abdomen. If there are it is likely that some blunt trauma has occurred. This is even more true with children. They have not developed the abdominal muscle structure that adults have. Also if a child has blunt force trauma and has not been in a car wreck or bicycle accident, suspect that abuse may be occurring. Many abusers target the abdomen because it is harder to see damage there. 

In a post collapse society we can expect the same survival rates for abdominal injuries that they had in Civil War times. Back then there was a 60-70% chance that you would die due to an abdominal injury. Even if you enter the abdomen to fix the problem you may cause more because of the lack of a sterile environment. There will probably be digestive byproducts floating around inside there that can cause additional infection. However if the patient is bleeding out internally, you have to intervene or they will most likely die.

One way to identify internal bleeding is called peritoneal aspiration or lavage. During this process, you will need a IV catheter, tubing, and a syringe. You puncture the abdomen with the needle and suck out the fluid. If it is bright red you have an active internal bleed. The abdominal lining or paritaneum contains lots of blood and bleeds a lot when it is ruptured. The blood pooling inside the abdomen will put pressure on the other organs and you will go into shock.

All women should be given a pregnancy test first if she has abdominal pain.

If someone has an abdominal injury in a post collapse situation, do a full exam first. Perform and inspection. Expose the patient from the nipples to the pelvis and look at the belly. Does it have discoloration? Is it distended? Then perform an auscultation. Listen with the stethoscope to the patient's belly. Can you hear noise? You should. If you don't the bowel has stopped movement and that is not good. Next perform a percussion exam. Put one hand gently on the patient's belly and tap on your knuckle with your other hand. Did it cause pain? If it did, that is not good. Finally palpate the belly. Put your hands on their belly and feel around in all four quadrants of the abdomen. 

In the upper right hand quadrant of the abdomen you will find the gall bladder and liver. In the upper left is the spleen. The appendix is in the lower right and pain in the lower left could be caused by an ovarian cyst or  the large intestine. 

Perform an initial exam and record your findings. Keep checking back on the patient. Only 65% of the time are abdominal issues identified on the first exam. If blood is accumulating the issue will become more noticeable over time. Ask about their medical history and recent accidents. 

Do these inspections over an extended time period and take notes of your findings. Typically only 65% of abdominal issues are identified on a first visit. If blood is accumulating it will be more noticeable over time, along with most other problems. 

To identify appendicitis, pain usually starts at the belly button. Then it moves down to the right upper quadrant. Finally it reaches what is called McBerney's Point. This is exactly 1/3 of the way from the pubic bone to the belly button. There will be "rebound tenderness." When you press on the belly the pain is worse when you release.   

If there is ballistic trauma to the abdomen, check all around the body for additional wounds. The bullet can bounce around and come out in unexpected places. The shock wave from the bullet is another concern. It can cause bleeding from organs even if they weren't actually impacted directly by the bullet. Additionally, bullet expansion and fragments can cause problems. If bone was contacted, these shards can travel through the abdomen piercing organs as they travel.

There are four regions of the belly. The part below the rib-cage and lower ribs contains the diaphragm, most of the liver, stomach and spleen. The pelvic abdomen contains the female organs, small intestines,  rectum, and bladder. If there is bleeding during urination the bladder may have been impacted. If the bladder was pierced, urine may get into the abdomen. There is a chance that you can survive this injury. Sometimes the gut will put pressure on the wound and scarring will form on the bladder. The body will form a walled off area that contains the offensive material. The true abdomen is the parts that float freely in the peritoneum (stomach and intestines). The area behind the peritoneum and the ribs contains the aorta, vena cava, and kidneys. If you are going to be the medic you have to learn your anatomy!

There are many issues that modern medicine can take care of that doctors will not be able to do anything about in a post collapse situation. There are going to be discomforts that people will have to learn to live with. There are some hard realities when it comes to survival that will absolutely break doctors' hearts because with the proper tools they could have fixed them. 

Even if there is a chance to go into the abdomen and properly handle the problem the risk of infection is going to be huge. Think about stocking fish antibiotics and lots and lots of medical supplies. The most survivable abdominal injury may be something out of Hollywood. If you get a puncture wound to your "love handle" area, that does not impact the abdominal lining or organs you will be okay. Otherwise it is very hard to escape life threatening injuries when it comes to an abdominal injury.

If there is blunt trauma to the abdomen look for "Cullen's Sign" or bruising around the belly button. Also look for "Grey Turner's Sign" or bruising in the flank. If you see these things there are some major issues going on inside the patient's body. There is not much you can do besides observe the patient. You can try to apply pressure but it usually doesn't help much. You can intervene surgically if you are willing to take the risk. Make the decision using the peritoneal aspiration test. You could use suction to remove blood but there will be a lot. If you have power, you can use a suction machine. If the blood is bright red, there is an active bleed. Blackish red blood means the bleeding has stopped and you are removing old blood. In a best cast scenario you would only see clear fluid. This would indicate no bleeding has occurred.

If someone has appendicitis you have to make the decision to remove the organ or not. Catching it early is your best bet. Unless the abdomen is very rigid you can try treating it with antibiotics: doxycycline, metronidazole, Fish Zole, or bird biotic. The appendix may cool on its own. If the appendix has ruptured, they might survive but you need to learn to do an appendectomy

With all injuries, don't wait until things get really bad! The early you catch things the better. Be on the lookout for people having pain and follow up with them.

There are some things you can stock to prepare for your group's medical needs. If you can get IV fluids you should. Ringers lactate is what you want. However, usually you can only get it with a prescription, it is heave to carry, you need to stock a ton of it. They are usually available by the liter and one liter is not going to even going to begin to help someone who is in full blown hemorrhagic shock. If you have someone who is hit in a major artery they only have three to five minutes until they die. That's just reality. 

You should have a surgeon's kit as well as an isolation room to deal with infectious disease. You need a lot of medical supplies and you need a ton of medical supplies if you are going to be caring for a community. You should have supplies on hand for orthopedic issues. There should also be a designated procedure area with an instrument tray that is only used for medical utensils. You want the area to be clean. Sterile is best but the reality is that is not going to happen. Do your best to decrease the bacteria in the area. For your medical tools, you can sanitize them in a pressure cooker. Wrap them in newspaper and put them in the pressure cooker with 250 psi for 30 minutes. Use bleach for cleaning. One part bleach to nine parts water. Make sure there are only hard surfaces not covered with any type of fabric. Liquid bleach will last a year to eighteen months in storage so it is not the best choice to stock. Get pool shock or calcium hypochlorite. They will sterilize water and make bleach. What ever product you decide to buy the percentage of hypochlorite should be more than 65%. 

Medics are going to face hard situations. Things that seem simple now are going to be very difficult to handle.

Want to learn from Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy? They may be coming to a town near you. Check out their schedule of available classes at: www.doomandbloom.net/medical-classes/

Dr. Joe Alton, aka Dr. Bones

Joe Alton, M.D., aka Dr. Bones, is an M.D.  and fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American College of OB/GYN. Amy Alton, A.R.N.P., aka Nurse Amy, is an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner.  Together, they’re the authors of the #1 Amazon bestseller in Survival Skills and Safety/First Aid “The Survival Medicine Handbook”, well known speakers, podcasters, and YouTubers, as well as contributors to leading survival/homesteading magazines. You will find over 700 posts on medical preparedness on their website.

Their mission:  To put a medically prepared person in every family for disaster situations.

Dr. Alton: https://www.doomandbloom.net/

Sara F. Hathaway
Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster and Without Land. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com


Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Hurricane Safety

Episode 134: Season 4 ep 10

Vince and Erika head into Houston with the Texas Militia to help evacuate citizens in Battle for the South. Here to talk with us today about Hurricane safety before, during and after is Wilderness Medical Instructor, Kevin Reiter. 

Listen to the Audio Podcast

Featured Quote:

"Erika had never been to Houston before the Great Quake, but she guessed it was like many other cities, former shells of what they had once been."

Subscribe to The Changing Earth Podcast

Hurricane Lessons from Kevin

Before the hurricane comes, listen to the weather reports. Follow the instructions and evacuate when directed. It is better to be safe than sorry. It's difficult to judge what is going to happen. The meteorologists have a much better guess than you do. 

You should be sufficiently stocked just in case you have to shelter in place. Have at least a weeks worth of food and water. Comfort items are often overlooked but priceless when stress is high. Have some toilet paper and things that you use on a daily basis. Make sure you have extra prescription medications as well as a fully stocked first aid kit. Having a game plan makes evacuation an easier process. Know your evacuation routes. Plan on everyone else leaving as well. Have a back up to your backup plan. 

Water is absolutely essential and although you are surrounded by it in a hurricane there are many contaminates that may make it dangerous to ingest. You need to have the skills to process water. What you choose to use to make the water potable depends on what you have on hand. You must filter the water to begin with. Then you can boil it, use chemicals, or a steri pen to kill the bacteria (Are all water filters created equal?). Once you collect the water pour it through a bandana, t-shirt, etc, something that is going to take out all of the large chunks. Kevin suggests using a Katadyn Hiker Pro Microfilter. Then boil the water. Katadyn filters will get the major stuff out and boiling provides another security measure. Try to locate the cleanest source of water you can find and remember the water we drink now has an "acceptable" amount of chemical contamination. When you are relying upon these questionable water sources it is usually a short term deal. If you had to live on it for a long term period you may want to move on and find a better water source. Desalinization removes the most chemicals of any processing method. However, it is still not one hundred percent effective, it takes time, parts and it is hard to move if you are mobile. Do your best to mitigate risks. Use a three layer filtering process for example, filter, then MP1 Tablet, then boil. Remember that some diseases won't show up for weeks. The bacteria have an incubation period. 

Because the flood water can be so contaminated, it is a good idea to make sure you have long pants and sleeves if you have to enter it. This layer of protection will mitigate risk. Alternately you could have a pair of waders reserved for these situations and maybe a blowup raft for transporting young, old or injured.

If you didn't evacuate or the storm suddenly changed course, you may need to bunker in place. During the hurricane, you want to stay away from windows. Try to maintain an open line of communication. Let people know your plan and have a call schedule. Find the most secure from of commuication that won't fail. Often times if you don't have a cell signal, you can still send text messages. Think about the possibilities ahead of time and have a backup to your go to. You can also invest in a Satellite phone or you can rent one. Your go to form of communication will depend on your local infrastructure. Hard lines may be more or less reliable than a cell or internet connection. You can get an antennae that extends the range and magnifies the signal of your cell phone. Remember if you can send a text your phone can be found. Try to keep it on. Have an external battery pack charged and stored double packed in Ziploc baggies. 

Depending on your environment, you may want to seek high ground. Pay sharp attention to what happens around your home when it rains. Assume that the water will get much higher than usual. Does the water build up in certain area? Try to run through multiple scenarios and determine where you would be safest. Going to a roof might not be the best idea if there is a tree that could potentially fall on you or your home. 

Power is usually the first thing that is lost and it goes out quickly. Have extra batteries for your essential items, especially your phone. Have a reliable light source. A weather radio that cranks is also a practical item to have on hand. 

Remember if you evacuate before the storm hits, you won't need to worry about how to ride the storm out. Pack up your ego and go.

After the hurricane, whether you decided to stay or go, there are going to be some major issues to contend with. The water supplied to your home may no longer be potable. Mold is a huge problem and steps to control it should be taken immediately. There will be multiple repairs required to both your home and your community. Be aware of any potential dangers.

Important tip: If you evacuated you better take your firearms with you. It can be a crime in some states to leave them behind. Plus if your home is looted and the firearms are stolen you may not realize it for some time. If a crime is committed with your weapon and you haven't reported it stolen you could be looking at some major dollars in legal trouble. When you are researching your evacuation route, know where you are going. Find out what is the proper way to travel with your weapons and the rules of any states you may be crossing through or headed to.

Take pictures of all of your personal property and have it stored in the cloud. Know your insurance policy and understand what is covered. Often times flood damage requires a special policy in addition to your traditional policy. Have all of your personal documents stored in an easy to reach area. They should be double Ziplocked as well. Make sure that if you are relying upon a safe to keep your documents preserved, it is water proof or fire proof, etc. Another good idea is to store a copy of those documents with a family member or trusted loved one that does not live in the same state. 

If you hunkered in place and are now leaving your home, watch out for "Widow Makers." You have to be situationally aware and look up. Dead limbs can be hanging by a thread and fall down in the wind. If you are stuck on your roof, use a signal mirror to signal helicopters flying by. The signal mirror works best with sunlight, a flashlight will not produce the same results. Remember that the rescuers are going to triage the situation and help those in the greatest need first. If you are having a barbecue on your roof, you probably won't be top priority. Be patient. 

There are some quality sources of training to get better prepared. You can also learn hand signals for communication.  FEMA offers CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) Training. This training will teach you a myriad of rescue skills, including how to mark a building with the correct symbols. These symbols indicate if someone inside needs help or if there is anyone at home at all. The symbols are known as the International Rescue Symbols. Learn the symbols! Have paint stocked up ahead of time. You can also train in a basic and advanced first aid class. It is really worth it! Alternately, you can take an Emergency Medical Technician training class at most local colleges or with a professional trainer. 

The bottom line is, follow the advice of your advanced warning systems. As Kevin says, "the graveyard is full of people who said, it will never happen to me."

Kevin Reiter

Kevin has had an avid interest in the outdoors since his father took him fishing at age 3, and has continued to pursue many outdoor activities for over 45 years, such as hiking, camping, fishing, trapping, and hunting. While serving as a Reconnaissance Specialist in the US Military, he started his diving career, and holds the certifications of DiveMaster and Master Scuba Diver, with over 15 specialties. For most of his life, he has not only been continually learning, but has used that knowledge about nature and the outdoors to teach others.

Kevin has taught members of Search and Rescue teams, participated in numerous SAR missions, given lectures on diving medicine at university hospitals, volunteered as an EMT and firefighter in his local community, served as an Assistant Scoutmaster with a local Boy Scouts Troop, and actively participates in educational podcasts and videos for EMS providers and the Preparedness community.
In 2010, Kevin was certified by the National Board of Diving and Hyperbaric Medical Technology as a Diver Medical Technician (DMT). At that time, he was one of less than 2,000 people to ever receive this certification in the United States.
Sara F. Hathaway
Sara F. Hathaway is the author of the The Changing Earth Series: Day After Disaster and Without Land. She also hosts The Changing Earth Podcast which blends her fictional stories with educational survival tips. Sara grew up in the country where she developed a profound interest in the natural world around her. After graduating with honors from The California State University of Sacramento with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, she launched into a career in business management. In her fictional novels her research and experience with survival techniques and forgotten life-sustaining methods of the generations past come to the forefront in a action packed adventures. She has used her background in business management to pave new roads for fictional authors to follow and she delights in helping other achieve the same success. She currently lives with her husband and two sons in California where she is at work on the sequel to her first two novels. For more information and a free copy of “The Go-Bag Essentials” featuring everything you need to have to leave your home in a disaster visit: www.authorsarafhathaway.com