Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas 2010

Well we have made it to the Eve of Christmas 2010, for my self I wish to give all whom check into this blog a special Christmas wish:

May your preps be plentiful, your aim be true, your skills be many and your wits be sharp. Hold your Love ones close to you and tell them along with your friends how much they make up whom you are and how life for you is more rewarding for you than you yourself gives back. And as well all gather around family and friends this Christmas of 2010 let us all give a prayer for our Country that she may always prosper and be the awesome example of FREEDOM no matter what the empty suits in Washington say.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Never pay income tax again after hearing only 36 min. of this documentary by late Aaron Russo


Monday, December 6, 2010

Saving $$$$ for Christmas

You’ll find it in your fuel budget!
☺When you pump, look down. About half of those stains are from spilled, dripped, dropped or overflowed gasoline. Be more careful at the pump to get the gas in the tank; not on the ground.
☺Another great read internet search Peak Oil from any search engine and choose the .org one…..”"Big deal. If gas prices get high, I’ll just drive less. Why should I give a damn?"
Because petrochemicals are key components to much more than just the gas in your car. As of the year 2002, approximately 10 calories of fossil fuels are required to produce every 1 calorie of food eaten in the US. Source The size of this ratio stems from the fact that every step of modern food production is fossil fuel and petrochemical powered: Pesticides and agro-chemicals are made from oil;
Commercial fertilizers are made from ammonia, which is made from natural gas, which is also peaking in the near future. Source
Most farming implements such as tractors and trailers are constructed and powered using oil-derived fuels.” End conclusion you should take away: grow a garden! And trees.
Not sci-fi, conjecture, projecture…just plain facts, folks!
☺Watch the movie –FUEL Cinema Libra Studio Blue Water Entertainment by Hero BX Johnny O’Hara and Josh Tickell … if this doesn’t open your eyes, either nothing will or your brain is not comprehending much….or you’ve made a conscious choice to waste your money-me? I’d rather keep mine for me. Look for it in your local library.
☺Slow Moving Vehicles, drivers hauling towing anything…hey, pull over! Let the traffic pass you. If you go 5-10MPH, to be careful for your load, be considerate to the 30-40 cars behind you. We all pay same for gas. Let them pass you instead of making them take 40 minutes to go 10 miles. PS-In some places you can be ticketed for NOT doing this.
☺If you have cruise use it on distance travelling to maintain a constant speed in the engine.
☺Pay cash. Not debit, not credit cold hard cash. Some stations even give cents off per gallon for cash
☺Home, unplug everything, but fridge stove, water heater and plug in as go; use power strips and unplug those also. Don’t charge cell phone overnight. It‘s only needs 1-3 hours. Use CFC bulbs-the dollar stores even sell them cheaper.
☺Remember a hose is just like a straw IT ACHIEVES it’s own level, how can this work for me? What happens before/after I pump? Should I fill up or get few gallons at a time?
☺ Don’t buy fuel if you DON’T need it, just because it dropped a cent or two. If it’s dropping, more than likely in 2/3 more days it will be cheaper. Remember consume all you have, gas does gum up. Keep your car in decent working order, oil change, tires, fluids, etc etc.
☺ When waiting on a pace car in construction zones or stopped in zones, turn your car off. They have those flaggers for a reason, why idle? Your not getting thru any faster even if you ram the car in front of you! And then your really not. Treat work vehicle the same, don’t take the approach, I’m not paying for the gas so who cares? Oh but you are. You pay with higher prices at pump, on your electric, AND that’s your next raise your wasting. Construction & OTR trucks that idle, don’t. I watched a dozer cut and load a side dump truck at site. Took over 30 minutes (I know that because that’s how long it took me to walk past) 30 minutes. The dump truck ran the whole time, with no driver!!!! WHY? And cut warm up times! If you do ½ hour do 15 minutes
☺Skip the plastic bags at the stores, they are made from oil. Taking about 37 million barrels per year! Use cloth or canvas. If you have no choice reuse them all you can. Recycle. FYI-July 4th weekend, I got told by a Wally World cashier that the goal is by 2012, they are going to be charging for those plastic bags, make the switch now!
☺Merge driving, watch for the city bus up ahead; don’t get stuck behind it, even worse (I actually saw this) 4 cars stuck in 4 lane intersection-light changed in rush hour traffic…no one in all four directions could move because of those four cars behind the bus for two light changes. The backup was more than 200 cars. Wow.
☺ Rural mail delivery, why not park & walk those 20-40 boxes rather than idle inch by inch? When was the last time you saw a UPS truck running during a delivery? I never have. I think maybe they have figured out that the idling costs big time money. And there’s the theft issue. Me? I wish it was legal to relocate anyone’s car who does this, just to teach them a lesson. Why do taxis sit idling when waiting on a fare? At hotels in tourist destinations? At airports? Why don’t the cab companies clamp down on this? It’s income out the door! Rental Cars? Turn key off as they inspect for prior damage and show you features. This takes up to 10 minutes, why waste the gas? Why aren’t parking security guards on bikes, golf carts, ATV. They go just as fast thru a lot and places a car cannot and take less fuel? Not to mention cost of vehicle, insurance, plates, and driver. Why do armor trucks idle at pickups? Yet, the delivery companies don’t!!?
☺Buy local .. anything & everything you can meat market, produce, bakery, save fuel bringing things to you. The only people who should not are shut ins. We utilize that ship to me, that it is not a convenience anymore. IT’S killing us at the gas pump. And take a second to read labels, buy American. Best example: White Rain Shampoo/Condition made in USA…VO5 made in Canada paid for freight to truck it here, & sent your purchase dollar out of country
☺ Highway driving …find a semi going slightly faster than you and stay behind 100-200 yards or so…his tailwind sucks you along saving you gas, & he has CB for speed traps. Win win situation. Remember if you can’t see his mirrors … he can’t see you; don’t tailgate. Turn overnight parked Semis, cars, and trucks off at truckstop/rest areas. School buses shut off AT school delivery AM & pickup PM, while loading unloading. Not only safer, cheaper.
☺Keep a copy in your car. And watch when you are doing and others, highlight or check off, look at after three days. Then go OMG! Great kids busy project.
☺Read up, and learn about CAFE standards… do you know cars only have to conform to standards from 1980’s yet our technology has exceeded? Why? Good reads A Declaration of Energy Independence by Jay Hakes;Energy Victory by Robert Zubrin. Use internet for cheapest fuel… don’t then go there get in line and idle wasting 1/8 tank to get ¾. Did you see the new GM Chevy Volt? 232 MPG! Why aren’t they all being made that way? Why aren’t we demanding it? On all cars?
☺Concerts/plays/venues/fairs…take a bus to just to save, but if you drive … don’t sit in lot before & after with car on listening to radio AND after take your time 1) leaving the site just to get to your car and 2) in lot wait for traffic to clear. Or partying in your car with it on … at least turn it off.
☺ Are you aware there are cars that are now being made when there is a 3 second stop, the engine is designed to shut down, to consume fuel. Why not all cars? And if they’re making cars this way … that are smarter than us; hmmm… what are we doing wrong? What does that tell you? Why haven’t you sent the auto mfr an email telling them? After all they just got bailed out with YOUR money.
☺ It may not sound like it belongs here, but it does. Don’t litter. The litter that is on the highway’s is picked up two ways, either employees or volunteers DRIVE out there and bag up, leave at roadside then trash crew comes behind and cleans bags. Your litter creates two additional vehicles on the road to clean up. And they need fuel to get there, that if you were not littering would not be happening, every drop drives up the cost and demand. Guess who pays for that fuel? You do, in taxes. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot. Trash cans are literally everywhere. Gas stations, stores, malls, your house, parks, etc…throw it in a trash can at your next stop.
☺Is there any value to a toll road? What is it? To go 80-90MPH? you need to get there faster? Will 15 minutes make that much difference? ONLY, when you crash on toll road, and then get an EMS to you.
☺ Don’t take spouse/kids/friends anywhere to drop off like mall, library, grocery, store, etc then sit in the parking lot with car on. And don’t circle the lot, Park. Someone said leave copies at pump…altho email also, it’s faster & always there. Turn car off when waiting on a funeral procession, rural mail delivery that gets out of car, loading/unloading. I think places that service autos, ie insurance co, dealers, parts warehouse, etc. should keep a copy on their counters. Waiting AT the bus stop on kids? Turn the car off. If you do this 5 times (we know it’s 10) times a week for even 2 minutes a pop … you wasted gas for 20 minutes ONE WEEK. Reality is about an hour a week.
☺Go right on red all the time, don’t hold up traffic. It is also legal to go LEFT on RED, from a one way street to another one way street with traffic that you merge LEFT into. Mostly in downtown areas.
☺ Please pull forward at pumps avoids others having driving around, and not just at pumps-anywhere. They even post this on the pumps. Drive the lights to avoid brake slow down stopped traffic. Do you realize when you stop to drop off you MAKE all cars behind you stop also? Park. Allow other drivers out in traffic, keeps them going & not just sitting there idling. Look before you start the car anywhere, if your in a parking lot & cars & people are behind you, c’mon you know you’re not going it clears, why idle?
☺Recognize when you are wasting gas, every person's needs are different.
☺ Combine all trips is good, combine all trips with neighbors, friends, relatives is better, and look for stores like Home Depot and Wally World that ad match. One stop shopping. When going out for lunch, ask coworkers if they want anything from where your going-eliminates multiple trips.
☺ Avoid all drive thru’s of any kind…fast food, bank, ATM, pharmacy, even !funeral homes! , etc…park and walk it..consider it exercise, it gets you out of the 4/5/6 deep car idling line. Using the ATM takes about 3-5 minutes- why is your car on? Use the walkup ATM. Waiting on a train? Turn the engine off. Your stuck 5/10 minutes anyway.
☺Forward this to your email contacts, make a bigger impact, use copy and paste; links expire.
☺ Keep prospective and look at prices across the country especially if your planning road trips. Report pumps that are incorrect to department of weights and measures. Best way to test a pump, run one gallon, did it read the posted price? Limit teen drivers cruising. If they go every Friday, make it every other Friday. Choose alternate transportation with less or no fuel … especially for short trips. Even make it your goal say IF it’s 4 blocks, you’ll always avoid driving it. And make it a goal to do this once a week for normal driving use. Don’t mow your lawn if you have grazing animals, let them eat the grass down, and if they go thru your lawn, neighbors??

Now you know what to do … forward…and use copy paste, links expire. Make a bigger impact. Or get ready for gas at the $4 mark.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Finding Your Way

You should be able to read a compass and a map, but in a survival situation you may not have either.  In these situations you must turn to the two things that our ancestors used, the sun and the stars.  To find direction when the Sun is shining, the rule of thumb is that the Sun rises in the East and sets in the West, and at midday in the Northern Hemisphere the Sun will be roughly South.  The following are ways which are fun to use and with practice can be quite accurate.

Shadow Stick

Method 1:  Find a flat piece of ground.  Find a stick about 12” to 1 yard long and stick or hold it upright in the ground.  Mark the tip of the shadow with a stick or stone, wait about 30 minutes and do the same again.  A line drawn between the two points will run from West to East, with the first point being West.

Method 2:  This method will take you longer but will be more accurate.  Mark your first shadow tip as in (A) in the morning.  Now draw an arc at the distance from the stick to the shadow tip, using the stick as the center point in the afternoon, mark the exact spot where the shadow touches the arc.  Now join the two points to give the West to East line, with the morning point being West.

Using the Stars

In the Northern Hemisphere, the best signpost is the Plow (Plough), by following a line through the two outside stars you will find the North Star (Polaris).  In the Southern Hemisphere, the best signpost is The Southern Cross (Crux).  This constellation is not as easy to use or to find as the line Plough, but it is four bright stars in the shape of a cross (don't use the False Cross to its right which has dimmer stars set further apart).  Take a line down the cross and also a line down the two bright stars on its left - where these two lines cross is South.

Using an Analog Watch

Using an analog watch for finding direction can only be used if the watch is set to standard time (with no daylight saving).  In the Northern hemisphere, hold the watch flat and point the hour hand towards the Sun.  Now bisect the angle between the hour hand and the 12 on your watch to give you a North-South line.


In the Southern Hemisphere, hold the watch dial and point the number 12 towards the sun.  The line that bisects the angle between the hour hand and the 12 is the North-South line.  Note that this method will become less accurate the nearer you are to the equator. 

Making your Own Compass

This will require a needle and a magnet.  Stroke the needle in one direction from it's eye to it's point with the magnet, about 25 times.  Suspend the needle by a thread half-way along its length and the point of the needle will point North.

A another way is to fill a bowl with water and float the needle on a piece of leaf or piece of paper.

Using the Moon

The moon has no light on its own.  We all know that.  It reflects the light that comes off the sun.  As it orbits the earth over 28 days, the shape of the moon changes.  Why is that?  Because the shape changes based on the shape of the light reflected according to its position in respect to the sun.  When the moon is on the same side of the earth as the sun, no light is visible.  This is the "new moon".  As the days pass, the moon reflects light from its apparent right-hand side, from a gradually increasing area as it waxes.  At the full moon, it is on the opposite side of the earth from the sun and it wanes.  The reflecting area gradually reducing to a narrow sliver on the apparent left-hand side.  This can be used to decide direction.

If the moon rises BEFORE the sun has set the illuminated side will be on the West.  If the moon rises AFTER midnight the illuminated side will be in the East.  This may seem a little obvious, but it does mean you have the moon as a rough East-West reference during the night.

Natures Way

Have you ever notice that moss tents to grow thicker on the North side of a tree?  Maybe you have heard that moss only grows on the North side of a tree and wondered  if were true or not.  It all depends on where you live.  If you live in the middle latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, the moss latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, the south side will grow thicker than on the north side.  It may sound like an old folks tale, but it is true.  The reason is there is more sun on one side.  The middle gets more sun.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Prepping, it ain't for sissy's, faint and or weak of Heart

Greeting to any new followers and current followers and Friends of Nog's Preppers blog.
I am Pale Rider a friend of Nog and guest blogger, looking forward to sharing concepts and ideals with Nog, Knine and the rest of you.

Now on with the show:

How many of you are serious about prepping and how many of you is this just warm casual'll only hurt yourself and your loved ones if you can't be honest. Just as I figured you think you are serious but you just don't want the stigma of being thought crazy or worst yet a survivalist.

Screw them that think that way including the Electards in Washington DC, this site is for getting back to basics and getting in touch with that thing called (drum roll please) self reliant like our founding fathers and fellow Americans in the past have been.

So dig out your old Boy Scout / Girl Scout hand books, those old copies of Mother Earth News, Popular Mechanics and any other manual, book or magazine you have squirreled away and roll up our sleeves and start re-reading those old reference materials and get back to depending on yourself and not on NannyGov or any other Alice in Wonderland fantasy place.

I look forward to sharing my success's and of course "ah shucks" with you as we get back to reality, first thing we will discuss will be .....FIRE.....without it we are lost....We will video our attempts of bow fire starting, flint/steel, optical and plain old char cloth in our next posting.

In the mean time share your experience's and don't be shy not everyone is Mr Wizard and always remember that "it's always better to drill and make mistakes in normal times not when the world is crashing down on you.

Till next post, Prep!!!


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

YouTube - homestead series

YouTube - homestead series


Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Just When you, Think you Thought of Everything

Two motto's to live by; the Boy Scout motto "Always be Prepared" and The Marines motto, "Improvise, Adapt, Overcome."

We lived through one winter storm here in Kentucky in the early 90’s that left us with 18” of wet snow, temps in the 30’s and below, and no power for 5 days. I had a chimney put in for a wood stove when we built our home. Yep I procrastinated (not good) and I didn’t have my wood stove, lesson learned. After that we bought a whole house wood burning stove.

But we are survivors, I improvise. I had a king size heated water bed, a wife, a 12 year old daughter, a 120lb Rot and a Golden Retriever we covered the bed with all of the blankets we had to keep the heat in. We all sleep very well. Put hot water bottles in during the day to keep the heat there. I also did a lot of camping at the time, I had a Colemen stove and a Colemen catalytic heater and lanterns (they put off a lot of heat, ventilation a must!). I bought all of this stuff at garage sales. I cordoned off one room with blankets and we stayed in that room. Maintained about 50 degrees. Nice and cozy considering. We Adapted and Overcame. We survived.

In 2007 we purchased a portable gas powered 1750 KW generator and a transfer switch. All I have to do is plug a cable into my generator and then into the utility box on the outside of our home, then flip the transfer switch. This will run every thing but the electric heat. But, we used up the firewood that we had a week before the storm and didn't order any more. My fault I forgot to order it, won’t happen again!

Face cord will last us about two weeks. We heated our house with our electric stove. Worked great, but it was eating up our fuel at four dollars a gallon. No big deal I’d just go and get some more gas. I got to the gas station and put my debit card in an nothing, all of the credit card systems at the gas stations in the whole town were down, but they would still take cash. Nope, I didn’t have any cash and all the banks were closed because no one could get to work. Schools were all closed. Road were clear though. So my suggestions to you is please don’t count on your credit cards or debit cards have some emergency cash on hand. Also would suggest getting a smaller generator just to run your refrigerator, heater and a few lights. Because if this lasted longer we would have been out of money real fast. I only get 10 hrs at half load that equals 16 gal of gas. You do the math. Of course gas was only $1.50 at the time of purchase. At lease I was preparing. You have to constantly be thinking of a back up plan.

The winter of 2009 we had a nasty ice storm an inch thick on the trees. The eerie sounds of breaking branches and trees dropping all day long. We lost power for three days. We were lucky some homes were out much longer and not prepared. But this time I was ready. So I thought.

I remembered that we did have an old kerosene heater that I picked at garage sale for $5 which we never used (just in case kinda thing). That was in storage. So I went to the storage which is fenced in. To get in you have to put in a pass code, but no electricity so pass code was worthless. There was just enough room between the gate and fence, barely. I managed to shimmy through. I get to the storage and get this heater and bring it home, praying that it will work. I tear it down and the wick was totally disintegrated. So now I have to find a wick an some kerosene. I call one of the local hardware stores, no dice. Then I call the one that never has what I need. Well, it was my lucky day they had only one and the right one.
My wife went to the grocery store to see if she could get some cash from our debit card while I work on getting the wick installed. It didn’t take long, so I called her to see if she managed to get some money; she informed she did. I decided to go and stand in line at the gas station and wait on her. There was thirty people in line when I arrived. It comes my turn. No wife, so I let some people ahead of me. I’m standing there thinking that their going to run out, before she gets here. She arrived shortly after my pessimistic thinking. My main concern was that my daughter and her husband and two infants were staying with us during this storm.

All’s well! We all sat in our home watching TV, playing with the grand kids, using the computers and cooking dinner. Business as usual. I decided to go outside, it was around 9:00pm to move some of the branches that had fallen on my van and in the yard (no damage). As I stepped outside shivers ran down my spine. I looked over the neighborhood, there wasn’t a single light on, not one. This set me back. If this were a real catastrophe where would all of these people be? Most of these people wound be in dire straights. I sat on my porch and thoughts started to run through my mind. The what if’s, if this lasted a lot longer when a few days turning into weeks then months. I’m preparing for my family. How many people can I help before my family suffers. I’m well armed. God forbid that I have to harm anyone, but my family comes first at all cost. I hope you can understand this. I’ll help where I can. Not for the whole community of unprepared people.

Don’t count on the government to help! They can only do so much. They were overwhelmed during hurricane Katrina, so we think! Personally in my opinion, I’m betting they were hoping more of those poor people would have died. Of course if they were prepared just a little bit it might not of been so bad. The only one you can count on is yourself. Never count on the government. "Watcha gonna do, watcha gonna do when the government's not there for you?" (To the theme song of Cops). This is a mind set that we must maintain until proven other wise. It’s sad when you can’t trust your government or even your neighbor. Especially when they are hungry, cold and have no place to stay. It’s comes to “survival of the fittest” or should we rephrase it and say “Survival of the prepared”.Ignorance is not an excuse! Learn all you can, practice all you can.

Apparently the message is not getting through to a lot of these people. I’m guessing it mainly the media’s fault. Most people are content with shopping at Wally World (little China) and listening to their favorite music and watching TV. I wish I could say watching the news. The news is a joke in it’s self these day. I guess if TV is all you have Fox/BBC America would be my choice to suggest. The rest are in the government's pocket. If you have the net/web the world is in your hands. It’s up to you to learn what you can. As far as the Politician’s are concerned their all in the pocket of the big corporations and special interest (not the people) and I mean all, with exception of maybe one or two. These corporations are slick they donate to both parties so it doesn’t matter who wins. Corporations are still in control. They have been manipulating us since the 30’s maybe longer controlling the masses is their game and we are such good puppets.


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Traps & Snares

Disclaimer: Traps are presented for information purposes only, they are dangerous, some lethally so.  Using them is also illegal in all likelihood.  Don't use them except in a survival situation.

SPRING SNARE:  Game running through the snare disengages the trigger bar and the prey is flung off the ground.  Use on game trails or in gaps through rocks or hedges.  Cut a notch in trigger bar (a) to fit upright (b).  Drive upright into ground.  Attach snare to trigger bar, then trigger bar to sapling.

BAITED SNARE:  Construct as for spring snare but using the release mechanism shown.  The bait support should be only lightly driven into the ground as it must fly away with the snare.

LEG SNARE:  Push a natural fork or two sticks tied together into the ground.  The line from a sapling is tied to a wooden toggle and the toggle passed under the fork.  When the game takes the bait, attached to a separate stick, it falls away releasing the toggle which flies up taking the snare and the game with it.  Large versions are amongst the best snares or heavy game.

PLATFORM TRAP:  Site over a small depression on the game trail.  Snares on the platforms either side, when the platform is depressed the trigger is released and the game held firmly by the leg.  For smaller, lighter game use the mechanism shown in (a), displacing either the bottom bar or the toggle will trigger the trap.

DEAD FALL:  A simple and effective deadfall trap, can be made to any size.  A horizontal bait bar is balanced at right angles to an upright with a lock bar, which supports a rock or other heavy weight pivoting around the tip of the upright.

TRIPWIRE DEAD FALL:  A heavy log is suspended over a busy game trail, trips the wire and pulls a retaining bar from under two short pegs secured in a tree trunk.  Keep the pegs as short as possible so that the bar will disengage easily.

SPEAR DEAD FALL:  Same as tripwire deadfall but utilizing rocks to add weight and sharpened sticks to add trauma to the crushing blow.

SPRUNG SPEAR TRAP:  This is a VERY dangerous trap, it should always be constructed and approached from behind the spring of the trap, only attempt if you are confident that your cordage and other materials are strong enough.  A springy shat with spear attached is suspended over a trail.  A slip ring made of SMOOTH material is attached to a trip wire and acts as a release mechanism.  A toggle (a) and short line to a fixed upright hold the sprung shaft in tension.  A further rod through the ring is tensed between the near side of the sprung shaft and the far face of the upright, securing until tripped.

BAITED HOLE NOOSE:  This trap is very useful for scavengers, drive 4 sharpened sticks into the pit, through the edges.  Lay a noose across them attached to a peg outside the pit.


Friday, January 22, 2010

Winter Storms and Extreme Cold

Heavy snowfall and extreme cold can immobilize an entire region. Even areas that normally experience mild winters can be hit with a major snowstorm or extreme cold. Winter storms can result in flooding, storm surge, closed highways, blocked roads, downed power lines and hypothermia.

How can I protect myself from winter storms and extreme cold?

* Know your winter storm and extreme cold terms
* What to do before winter storms and extreme cold
* What to do during a winter storm
* What to do after a winter storm
* Learn about floods that can result from winter storm thaws

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thunderstorms and Lightning

* Facts About Thunderstorms
* Facts About Lightning
* How Can I Protect Myself From a Thunderstorm or Lightning?

All thunderstorms are dangerous. Every thunderstorm produces lightning. In the United States, an average of 300 people are injured and 80 people are killed each year by lightning. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms. Other associated dangers of thunderstorms include tornadoes, strong winds, hail, and flash flooding. Flash flooding is responsible for more fatalities—more than 140 annually—than any other thunderstorm-associated hazard.

Dry thunderstorms that do not produce rain that reaches the ground are most prevalent in the western United States. Falling raindrops evaporate, but lightning can still reach the ground and can start wildfires.
Facts About Thunderstorms

* They may occur singly, in clusters, or in lines.

* Some of the most severe occur when a single thunderstorm affects one location for an extended time.

* Thunderstorms typically produce heavy rain for a brief period, anywhere from 3 0 minutes to an hour.

* Warm, humid conditions are highly favorable for thunderstorm development.

* About 10 percent of thunderstorms are classified as severe—one that produces hail at least three-quarters of an inch in diameter, has winds of 58 miles per hour or higher, or produces a tornado.

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Facts About Lightning

* Lightning’s unpredictability increases the risk to individuals and property.

* Lightning often strikes outside of heavy rain and may occur as far as 10 miles away from any rainfall.

* "Heat lightning" is actually lightning from a thunderstorm too far away for thunder to be heard. However, the storm may be moving in your direction!

* Most lightning deaths and injuries occur when people are caught outdoors in the summer months during the afternoon and evening.

* Your chances of being struck by lightning are estimated to be 1 in 600,000, but could be reduced even further by following safety precautions.

* Lightning strike victims carry no electrical charge and should be attended to immediately.

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How Can I Protect Myself From a Thunderstorm or Lightning?

* Know your terms
* What to do before a thunderstorm
* What to do during a thunderstorm
* What to do after a thunderstorm

What to Do After an Earthquake

* Expect aftershocks. These secondary shockwaves are usually less violent than the main quake but can be strong enough to do additional damage to weakened structures and can occur in the first hours, days, weeks, or even months after the quake.

* Listen to a battery-operated radio or television. Listen for the latest emergency information.

* Use the telephone only for emergency calls.

* Open cabinets cautiously. Beware of objects that can fall off shelves.

* Stay away from damaged areas. Stay away unless your assistance has been specifically requested by police, fire, or relief organizations. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.

* Be aware of possible tsunamis if you live in coastal areas. These are also known as seismic sea waves (mistakenly called "tidal waves"). When local authorities issue a tsunami warning, assume that a series of dangerous waves is on the way. Stay away from the beach.

* Help injured or trapped persons. Remember to help your neighbors who may require special assistance such as infants, the elderly, and people with disabilities. Give first aid where appropriate. Do not move seriously injured persons unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Call for help.

* Clean up spilled medicines, bleaches, gasoline or other flammable liquids immediately. Leave the area if you smell gas or fumes from other chemicals.

* Inspect the entire length of chimneys for damage. Unnoticed damage could lead to a fire.

* Inspect utilities.
o Check for gas leaks. If you smell gas or hear blowing or hissing noise, open a window and quickly leave the building. Turn off the gas at the outside main valve if you can and call the gas company from a neighbor's home. If you turn off the gas for any reason, it must be turned back on by a professional.

o Look for electrical system damage. If you see sparks or broken or frayed wires, or if you smell hot insulation, turn off the electricity at the main fuse box or circuit breaker. If you have to step in water to get to the fuse box or circuit breaker, call an electrician first for advice.

o Check for sewage and water lines damage. If you suspect sewage lines are damaged, avoid using the toilets and call a plumber. If water pipes are damaged, contact the water company and avoid using water from the tap. You can obtain safe water by melting ice cubes.

What to Do During an Earthquake

Stay as safe as possible during an earthquake. Be aware that some earthquakes are actually fore shocks and a larger earthquake might occur. Minimize your movements to a few steps to a nearby safe place and stay indoors until the shaking has stopped and you are sure exiting is safe.
If indoors

* DROP to the ground; take COVER by getting under a sturdy table or other piece of furniture; and HOLD ON on until the shaking stops. If there isn’t a table or desk near you, cover your face and head with your arms and crouch in an inside corner of the building.
* Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors and walls, and anything that could fall, such as lighting fixtures or furniture.
* Stay in bed if you are there when the earthquake strikes. Hold on and protect your head with a pillow, unless you are under a heavy light fixture that could fall. In that case, move to the nearest safe place.
* Use a doorway for shelter only if it is in close proximity to you and if you know it is a strongly supported, load bearing doorway.
* Stay inside until shaking stops and it is safe to go outside. Research has shown that most injuries occur when people inside buildings attempt to move to a different location inside the building or try to leave.
* Be aware that the electricity may go out or the sprinkler systems or fire alarms may turn on.
* DO NOT use the elevators.

If outdoors

* Stay there.
* Move away from buildings, streetlights, and utility wires.
* Once in the open, stay there until the shaking stops. The greatest danger exists directly outside buildings, at exits, and alongside exterior walls. Many of the 120 fatalities from the 1933 Long Beach earthquake occurred when people ran outside of buildings only to be killed by falling debris from collapsing walls. Ground movement during an earthquake is seldom the direct cause of death or injury. Most earthquake-related casualties result from collapsing walls, flying glass, and falling objects.

If in a moving vehicle

* Stop as quickly as safety permits and stay in the vehicle. Avoid stopping near or under buildings, trees, overpasses, and utility wires.
* Proceed cautiously once the earthquake has stopped. Avoid roads, bridges, or ramps that might have been damaged by the earthquake.

If trapped under debris

* Do not light a match.
* Do not move about or kick up dust.
* Cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.
* Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can locate you. Use a whistle if one is available. Shout only as a last resort. Shouting can cause you to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.