In A Pinch - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-23-2007, 12:16 PM   #1
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This fire emergency brings to the front something that has been at the back of my mind...

In a Pinch, I could back the truck up to the trailer and bug out. There's enough canned food, clothing etc. that I could live for a few days until some things sorted out.

I wonder if we shouldn't give a little thought to organizing the important things that we might want to grab in an emergency. Personal items, heirlooms, etc. Not the living room sofa but maybe documents and such.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:42 PM   #2
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I'm right in the middle of assisting in preparing business continuity plans for my company. We're worried about everything from earthquakes to the bird flu shutting down our operations. One piece of that is assisting our employees. We need to look at assisting employees who need to evacuate their homes as well as those that are confined to their homes. Rather than start from scratch, we're taking a look at what is available from the American Red Cross. I'd suggest everyone do the same:
American Red Cross Disaster Services

I generally don't keep food in the trailer because this time of year it's a freezable. In the summer, I worry about the heat causing spoilage. Then there's the rodents... but, I do have food available and handy to throw into a tote and off I go...
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:57 PM   #3
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Good points to ponder, Steve.

I do keep a limited supply of food in the trailer. If (like this year) I find myself too busy to camp very much, I rotate the stock. (My husband says that we'll never go hungry cuz we can just go out to my trailer and get what we need.) Like others, my trailer also has its own set of dishes, linens, tools, paper products, soaps, etc. I even keep a few T-shirts and such.

As far as papers go, I'm thinking that I might put all of my important documents in a safety deposit box with copies in the vehicle.
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:04 PM   #4
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Oh, yes, and the important stuff. My dad was a woodworker hobbyest and a mighty fine one, at that. He only made a few things for a few special people during his life and I could lose a lot of things (even pictures) that I could live without, but never those. Fortunately, most are small enought to throw into a box and take with me.
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:05 PM   #5
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I've been (slowly) working on my own disaster plan for home - based on the Red Cross list. I've got back-up copies for my laptop that I store at work (all my photos and Quicken financial records) and a short list of irreplaceable sentimental things to throw into the car (or the Escape). I always have a bunch of extra pet food and stuff in case I can't get to a store for awhile.

They say that the old 72 hr rule is not enough - you should really plan on being on your own for longer than that in a big emergency.
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:12 PM   #6
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I was thinking that one of those fire resistant lock boxes would be a good single point gathering spot for important documents not stored elsewhere. They're not really protection against a serious fire, but it would be one thing to grab that grouped papers, passports and such.
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:14 PM   #7
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Ours is always packed with enuff to make it 3-4 days. Of course the perishables (canned goods) are brought in after I return from the last fall/winter hunting trip. But, as for clothes, they are always packed--the benefit of having built in storage. The reason for this is, when we get a wild hair in the summer, we can do the final pack in about 20-30 minutes, and be on the road with just a fuel stop. So, in the far flung instance of an evac, we are ready. Larry
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:11 AM   #8
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i'm hoping i'll have my trailer restoration finished & equipped for emergency "escape" by the time i finish school...(3 more years?)
my schooling is leaning in the direction of nursing/EMT, so i'd like to think that i could use my car/trailer to get in to & stay near disaster areas for work... i'd also like to be full-timing in my trailer within a few years, so i can go where the work is, north in the summer, south in the winter... so the first couple of years will be troubleshooting my trailer to find what i need/don't need for living/survival...
--- steven
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:37 AM   #9
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I'm taking CERT classes - I'm about halfway through the program now. They're held once a week. I'd recommend them to anyone, even if you don't plan on joining your local CERT team. There is a lot of very good infomation taught that would be handy in the case of emergency.

Oh, and get your ham license if you don't have one already!
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Old 10-26-2007, 12:46 PM   #10
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Hi Lee,

I'm testing for my Technician's License on the 11th of Nov. Wish me luck. Haven't taken a test in over 40 years!
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Old 10-26-2007, 02:19 PM   #11
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Good luck, Chris! Make sure you take plenty of the free online exams to help you get prepared. Let me know if you don't know where they are - I'll get you a couple of addresses.
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Old 10-27-2007, 11:02 AM   #12
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Having just done this, I can tell you what I have/had and am quite comfortable with. Basically, the only discomfort/inconvinience I am suffering is a change in routine. When I woke up on monday am, I had no idea I would be living in the rig for a week, and I got out without panic or mahem .. calmly and without the panic worry of "Did I get this or that?"

First and foremost, keep the trailer hitch ready at all times. Do not block it with lawn mowers, storage sheds or that pile of kids outdoor toys. I had to move nothing and was hitched up in my usual 5-10 mins.

In the trailer are CDs with photos and "Papers" like insurance, pets records and other important stuff you will want handy. My bills are done online, and I have duplicate copies of them on that server, and my own. Having been under the belief that I lost my house in 2003, I had plenty of time to think of what I had thought I lost and sorted what was important. Remember.. everything is replaceable but time and memories. The rest is just "stuff".

Food.. RICE.. Rice can keep you from starving for several days. It may not be a taste treat, but it certainly isn't offensive, and can be used with many items to add flavor.. bollion cubes, even ketsup can make rice a hearty meal. Your pets can eat it too and they seem quite happy to get it.

Dry soups, powdered milk, outmeal, POP TARTS (They never go bad) a few jugs of water, hard candy, coffee for those inclined (Even unfresh coffee is better than none at all, sigur CUBES in a ziplock bag, or packets of sugar, coffee mate (It can be used as milk in a pinch.. really) and boxed items like Macs n Cheese, dry mashed taters, pasta, you get the idea.. this stuff never dies.

For drinks.. TANG!!!! I have several flavors and if there is no Dr Pepper, it beats nothing. You can even use it to flavor food if need be.

One mistake I made was to have all my linens out of the trailer at once. I have two sets of linens and bedding, towels etc, one is in the dirty pile and one is on the bed and in the bath etc and gets rotated. I was lazy last trip out and had ALL in the dirty pile. They were at the laundry when I bugged out, so I had to buy cheap sheets and a blanket. If thats the worst that happened to me, life is good. Clothes can be rinsed out or, if no water is available.. go dirty.. everyone else is too. In a pinch, I used my "Guest" sleeping bag until I could get replacements. I did have my extra shoes tho. I learned after my drowning Oregon trip that wet feet and no replacement shoes is not fun.

The second mistake I made was to be near max on my credit cards. I had to scramble to pay for the RV park until Farmers jumped in to help.. I don't normally max my cards, but thought I could for a home project a few weeks ago.. next time, I won't do that. I will be eating rice and beans to get them down again now.

Keep your gas tank full as often as possible. I know it's not always easy to do, but I try not to go home without at least half a tank. Otherwise, I stop and fill. This practice proved valuable last week, as the lines at the gas stations on the hill were an hour deep.

I always have a small solar panel in the trailer. It isn't my full array, but it's better than nothing. It's worked in a pinch before.

I forgot my gen set, as I know I was going to a full hook up site, but in a TOTAL disaster area, this may have been a major error.

I am about to pack up as I am allowed home now, but it won't take long. I did NOT deploy my awning, put out my solar lights or do any of the items I normally do when on a fun trip.

Now, this is all assuming the is an infrastructure for you to evac to. In a TOTAL Katrina type disaster, your credit cards are dead weight, as is your gen set..

I will correct my mistakes for next time by adding more boondocking supplies, or at least thinking like I won't have a 7-11 down the road to get coffee at.
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Old 10-27-2007, 11:11 AM   #13
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I forgot to mention all the stuff you have already got and done.. emergency radios that crank instead of using up batteries, low voltage lights to preserve your house battery, cranky flashlights, all the old fashioned stuff that will work when the lectricity goes out.. you got all that stuff, right?

Also, be alert.. lots of folks got stuck down the hill without any access to thier things because they WENT down the hill to go to work, even tho they knew a fire was on the mountain. I can't tell you how many times I have towed to work and not used the trailer. I am not sure why anyone would have thought it was a normal day.. but they did, and they got bit. I saw what was going on and chose to stay home and watch, and it proved to be a smart move.

You can't prepare for EVERY contingency tho. Have duplicates of survival stuff in the car in case you can't get back to your home when away.
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Old 10-27-2007, 01:52 PM   #14
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Gina... Great post and Great thinking! I always keep my little teardrop full of "things to go" and
my garage filled with bags of rice, beans and mountains of canned goods..... Ya just never know!
Of course up here we don't have to worry too much about running out of water.... but I always keep a LOT of firewood (and super sleeping bags, parkas, etc.) on hand for my back-up wood stove and inefficient (but cheery!) fireplace!
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