The possibility of a catastrophic and prolonged power grid failure is there . This is because the advent of science has made an Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP) attack possible (but it can also be caused by a solar flare).
For example, in 2003 there is a northeast blackout at Con Edison which left nearly 55 million people without electricity supply to their homes where the power outage even lasted for 2 days in several homes.
Hurricane Katrina occured in year 2005 leaving 2.6 million people to live without power. Some of the homes had to suffer longer periods of power outage because of extensive flooding which has structurally damaged the buildings, blocking any power access.
Furthermore, there was an ice storm in the year of 2013 that engendered a blackout in many areas of central Canada and the United States. The Toronto ice storm has crippled energy grids in Eastern Canada causing some houses to live without power for 5 days in a row.
These are just 3 examples out of the many power grid failures that has happened all around the word. With this alarming problem being rampant, it should be wise that we prepare ourselves for surviving a power grid failure immediately starting with the tips below.
Immediately store water
Since water is imperative for your survival, it would be wise for you to store water consistently. It is said that you will not be able to survive if you are deprieved of water for 3 days. Hence, a rule of thumb is to make sure you have at least 1 gallon of water for yourself each day, without discounting the fact that you need water to maintain proper hygiene and sanitation. You need at least half a gallon for drinking and another half for hygiene.
The amount of water you store is high dependant on many factors such as climate and body built. If you live in a hot climate with a nursing woman, it would be wise to store more than 1 gallon of water. As a matter of fact, FEMA recommends that everyone should have at water storage to suffice 3 days of survival.
After an Electromagnetic Pulse(EMP) caused a power grid failure, you should immediately fill your bathtub, pails and even glass with water. When the whole city has no electricity, the water distribution system will not function which causes water supply to slowly stop.
There is a device named WaterBob which is a great device that can be utilized for maximum water storage. Basically, waterBOB can hold up to 100 gallons of fresh water in any standard bathtub constructed heavily with food grade plastic. Moreover, water barrels are a great way to store clean water economically.
One word of advice, having a backyard pool does not mean you have access to long-term supply. There are many chemicals present which are unsafe for human consumption. Chlorine which are denatured by sunlight exposure and bacteria are just some example of harmful substances.
Prepare power sources
You will need electricity to get some light and even for communication purposes. In this contemporary, we are so accustomed to a life with electricity that even work, communication and entertainment is highly intertwined with the need of electricity. When I talk about power sources, I would like to include having as much flashlights in the list as possible.
It is vital that you store small flashlights in your house which will be useful when a blackout happen. If you are lucky, you get some light in the morning and afternoon but you will practically not be able to do anything without light at night.
Since you do not know when the grid will fail, you need to keep a flashlight at your workplace and even in your car so that you can effectively move to aid your loved ones. You could even find yourself pitch black in an elevator while working, how about taking out that flashlight and see what you can do?
A great and cheap way to have backup light is having a multi-function crank flashlight for times of crisis. This even comes as a USB phone charger while still being a torchlight.
Next, you could get a solar powered or wind powered generator which can keep your house going with minimal electricity consumption. Although doing this might be quite costly, it may even save you on your electricity bills in the long-run.
Have enough food ( with off the grid cooking gear)
You would need to have sufficient food supply if you were to survive a power grid failure. Depriving your body of nutritious food will at best engender your body to be weak and at worst, perish.
The obvious way to have sustainable amount of food is to have a proper food storage. Stock up on staple food which you and your family find most apetizing because you have to consume loads of it for energy. There are four categories for staple food which are meat, poultry or fist, bread or cereal, vegetables or fruits and dairy products. Basically, you have to balance it with a nutritious diet which is vital for your body’s immune system to fend off diseases.
You should limit your access to the refrigerator after the grid fails because cool air will easily come out of the refrigerator if you open it. Immediately consume the food that will spoil if it is not kept in cold temperature too, while keeping aside food that by nature can sustain longer in a mild cold environment.
Furthermore, having a grill and extra charcoal would be a great way to grill the meat kept in your refrigerator. Cooking your food is one way to make sure what you consume is safe because high temperature can wipe-out bacteria. One way is to start with wood ovens and rocket stoves which can be fueled by a few twigs while getting your food cooked. I would suggest a Bio Lite Wood Burning Campstove , which is powered by Lithium ion battery or even a solar power cooking oven for thrifty people.
If you have a backyard garden, that would be a great source of food. Planning and planting your survival garden will be a great way to provide organic food. One tip is to keep your survival garden hidden because people will come with all kinds of request if they know you have a stockpile of organic food in your backyard.
Having a full-set of first aid supplies
You can either make your first aid kit by putting one together or purchase a set from your local pharmacy. Ensure that you have a set of first aid kit in your car and
workplace because injury can happen anywhere.
Please do not mistake that medicines are only for physical scratches, viruses can take a life as well. Hence, you should follow the requirements proposed by American Red Cross regarding the anatomy of a first aid kit. Items such as absorbent compress dressings, adhesive bandages are just the basics.
To prep for virus attacks, I would advice you to prepare for the most common sickness in your area or diseases where your family history tend to show signs of. For example, you will need antistamine or apinephrine to deal with allergies. Get those medicines immediately!
Obtaining and practicing your survival knowledge
Without the knowledge to suture a wound, how would you deal with this scenario? How about operating that power generator that you bought?
It would be extremely helpful if you are able to read survival books and take a preparedness course. Knowledge is your most powerful tool. Having the ability to manage the situation when all hell breaks loose will make the difference between life and death for you or your loved ones.
If you own an electrical generator, you should take the time to learn about how it works and ways to fix certain malfunctions. There is a possibility that your generator will go haywire during a blackout.
Knowing the use of each medicine you have in your first aid kit is imperative for your survival especially when your get bruised or infected by a debilitating disease.
Thes best way to actually prepare for electrical grid failure is to actually live electrical grid failure! I would advice you to test your abilities by living without electricity for at least two days and assess yourself critically. With this practice, you can get considerable insights into what you should improve on and which items are vital for your survival.
Being able to communicate
Without electricity, you need to find alternative sources of power to charge-up your cell-phone and even obtain communication devices. There are two scenarios you have to prepare for : power outage in your area and power disruption affecting the world.
Without proper communication devices, you will be left in the dark regarding the crisis that is currently happening. All you can do is speculate and not know what is the real reason behind the power grid failure.
Firstly, you can get your cellphone solar charged with solar powered backup battery which has a solar panel on top. With this device, you will save electricity in the long-run while still having a device which is useful when the grid fails.
Moreover, get a list of important phone numbers and keep it with you. You should get the contact of your loved ones and local authorities. You may need the help of your local hospital where there may still be some supplies or even people to aid you.
Having a HAM radio would be the best way for you to communicate when the world is thrown into silence. However, it requires great mastery if you would want to transmit long distances which might even take years to master. I would recommend that you get a lisence to use a HAM radio so that you can practice with it without worrying about getting blacklisted by the government.
The power grid failure is one of the most possible disaster that can happen to you anywhere and anytime. With these 6 tips, you can get on the edge and survive longer during long periods of power outage because your are equipped with the necessary knowledge.
In short, our forefathers lived more simply than most people today are willing to live and that is why they survived with no grocery store, no cheap oil, no cars, no electricity, and no running water. Just like our forefathers used to do, The Lost Ways Book comes as a step-by-step guide accompanied by pictures and teaches you how you can survive in the worst-case scenario with the minimum resources available.
What do you think is the best way to prepare now for power grid failure? Please share your thoughts in the comment boxes below.
I am John Lewis, a blogger, survivalist and outdoor enthusiast. While I believe that everyone should enjoy their lives doing things they love, being financially, mentally and physically prepared to face challenges that may arise is inevitably important. You can follow me over at Epic Wilderness.