Dec. 2018 NIAC report: 'Surviving A Catastrophic Power Outage.'

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by agtman, Dec 31, 2018.

  1. bdcochran

    bdcochran

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    Response to brushing up on ham radio and morse code.
    Ok, assume you have done it. Let us also assume that you have a generator and a lot of fuel - or if you would like, a tall antenna, an expensive handheld and plenty of batteries.

    Based upon my life experience, my work as a volunteer radio operator for the county, and having an understanding of the county resources, I say the following and this relates to my county:
    1. you will not be allowed to use any county repeater for any personal usage or to provide reports unless specifically instructed to do so;
    2. there are no warehouses of blankets or food.
    3. the police will not respond to calls for assistance - the utilization will be directed (how about holding down the sheriff substation in the last riot with an old lady radio operator and a boy scout and being told to lock the door to the substation and not respond to calls for assistance).
    4. it is highly unlikely that the fire department will respond to individual radio calls for assistance (having done that in reporting fire locations during an extensive riot).

    I am not negative, just suggesting that you consider other preps. It is January 2019. Today, I am baking more hardtack. It takes hours to bake at a low temperature. The fuel used will also heat the house. The time and money spent will be a better use (for me at least) than reviewing morse code. I will also be throwing out old tax returns, consolidating supplies so I remove fire hazards and gain a current understanding of what I have put aside - another use of time.
     
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  2. Sheltie

    Sheltie More Cowbell!

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    Something people overlook is the backup a sewage and waste into homes on city sewer. If towns or city’s don’t have the power for filtration and pumps the sewer will back up and it won’t take a long time especially if rain is involved.

    “Shelter in place” could be challenging for some.
     
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  3. DannyB

    DannyB

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    Just be sure to know that gasoline now days is crap with a short storage life. If you store it for a generator you better rotate it through your vehicles. And you better run your generator regularly. I haven't yet, and don't learn quickly either. :) I bet it won't start right now.

    I should add that the last time I needed it, before the last carb overhaul, it had been sitting with non-ethanol gas that was treated with Stabil. And it still wouldn't start, and needed the carb overhaul.

    In the 70's we would park the boat in the fall with 2-cycle mix, take it out in the spring, and away we went. Not anymore.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
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  4. wjv

    wjv RIP Stan Lee.. . .

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    4 months of food
    2 months of water + a couple good water filters
    Lot-o propane for the grill and cook stoves and the camper
    Lots-o ammo
    A couple potty "Potty Pails" with blue sanitary chemicals
    Lots-o TP
    2 small Generators and some gas
    Couple months of BP meds for me
    Couple good quality Thermos's for Thermos cooking of rice & beans
     
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  5. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

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    I'm guessing that once things shake out one would be able to use private repeaters and talk with other hams to get information. I don't think anyone believes they would have a direct link to emergency services unless they were part of the emergency system (which BTW is a good reason to become part of system). Being able to listen to emergency services and/or communicate with other hams is the benefit of having radios.
     
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  6. agtman

    agtman 10mm Philosopher

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    Good points made here regarding the first-responders.

    Not just the L.A. riots though, but Katrina also taught us (or should have) that if the event is devastating enough, not only will police and firefighters not respond to emergency calls, they won't be showing up for work, at least not the majority of them. They'll be home with their families, or trying to get them out of Dodge to somewhere that's perceivably safer.

    The NIAC Report uses the term 'catastrophic' in the title and repeatedly in the text. But it's clear the writer(s) don't just mean a 'severe' or 'wide-spread' power outage, but one of long-duration, i.e., 3-4 months on the short end, and up to 6 months or more before even partial restoration.

    Hence, the emphasis in Recommendation #3 that local communities and their EMAs have "community enclaves" set up in advance and powered by 'microgrids' that 'combine distributed energy resources, energy storage, ***" to achieve "energy resilience."

    Presumably if such microgrids are operational after "the event," this will encourage folks to shelter in place rather than mass-migrate in search of water, food, warm shelter, medicine, fuel sources, etc.

    The problem I have is with subsection D of R-3, which I quoted in an earlier post.

    The Report's whole theory of the effectiveness of these local 'community enclaves' (CEs) is partially based on the false assumption (IMO) "that the majority of U.S. citizens are prepared and able to safely shelter in place for extended time periods."

    When folks are not 'prepared and able' to stay where they're at, they tend to leave for places they believe have what they need to stay alive (water, food, or just physical safety). Hence, the implicit fear of the Report is that absent operational CEs, the unprepared will, quite quickly, have the impulse to bug-out.

    But it's also based on the assumption that local communities are able and willing to fund the setting up of CEs that will not only contain the 10-12 'critical lifeline functions' identified in the report, but will also be manned and operational after the lights go out.

    A lot would first depend on the affluence of the particular city, town, township, or suburb, and then a political willingness to fund one or more CEs to the qualitative level envisioned in R-3.

    Perhaps the more affluent communities might be able to do it to the level the Report's authors seem to think is viable post-event; ... poor rural communities and the tax-poor urban centers, not so much.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2019
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  7. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

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    Excellent points...however having been involved in community emergency management in the past I suspect (like in the past) that federal grant money will become available to bring communities up to speed.

    That will remain to be seen.
     
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  8. agtman

    agtman 10mm Philosopher

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    Sitting near my roaring fireplace, looking thru this NIAC report again, a reliable source has advised me it's -10 degree air-temp outside without factoring for the wind-chill.

    Later tonight, the air-temp here will fall to a record of like, -16, with -45 degree wind-chills.

    Full-on arctic blast ... So if the Grid goes down nationwide tonight, the Report exhibits a clear preference for folks to 'shelter in place,' which begs the question: how long does the Gommit expect folks to 'bug-in' inside unheated homes and apartments after the power's out (assuming no generators, Big Buddy/propane-based back-ups, etc).

    Maybe if it's a house, they have a wood-burning fireplace. How long before the wood runs out?

    Just thinking out loud, between the wind howling at the front door and the desire to toss another log on the fire.
     
  9. cowboy1964

    cowboy1964

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    Which is just one more reason I want to get out of Ohio and move to a more temperate climate.
     
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  10. bdcochran

    bdcochran

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    The device is called a backflow cut off.e.costhelper.com/backflow-preventers.html

    Your homeowner's policy will contain an exclusion for a backflow of sewerage into your home. So, depending upon where you are, you have it installed. I have known of two people who lacked the device and suffered thousands of dollars in damages. I am on a hill and have been told by plumbers that it will not back up to where I am.
     
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  11. bdcochran

    bdcochran

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    Absolutely, correct. Nearly all homeowner policies exclude coverage for sewer backup. Before you spend your hard-earned dollars on the latest whiz bang shown in a gun magazine, spend the money (Backflow parts cost between $35 and $900. Labor costs between $35 and $250) and install a backflow on your sewer line. If you have an EMP attack, the liklihood is that your city will not be sending around pumping trucks to clear sewer line blockages.
     

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  12. agtman

    agtman 10mm Philosopher

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    It's interesting how the topic of the catastrophic consequences of a power-grid loss pops up here and there. The recent report which prompted this thread shows the government is quite concerned about it.

    So recently I came across this subject again while watching a YouTube video by YT figure 'John Mark'. In 'Civil War 2' (CW2) he breaks down an analysis which a former Red Team Planner (RTP) for the government wrote on the topic of who would win a second American Civil War - something which also very much concerns the government.

    In fact, per the RTP's analysis, his federal government contacts apparent view a CW2 scenario as inevitably resulting from a political environment in which a regime of left-liberal types and 'social justice warrior Commies' (together termed 'the Establishment'), who've gained the presidency and majority control in Congress, have sufficiently extinguished traditional constitutional freedoms to the point where a coalition of alienated patriot/conservative/Alt-Right groups, and other 'grass roots right-wing' players, arm-up and begin taking to the streets.

    Whether you agree with it or not, that's the premise for the RTP's analysis which the YouTube vid then takes you through issue by issue.

    The RTP's analysis of 'Who Wins?' is based on a list of the 'Top 14' issues or factors, with each being discussed and then weighed as to which side would have the advantage, big or small - or on some issues maybe neither side has a clear advantage, in which case it's a 'tie.'

    Relevant to this thread's topic, the RTP lists as Numero Uno: 'Ease of Taking Down the Power-Grid,' with an interesting discussion of how that would happen, what the resulting fall-out would be, and which side is advantaged by it.

    No need to watch the whole video. The Red Team discussion starts about the 3:40 mark. The relevant power-grid discussion runs from the 4:38 mark thru about 7:48, although the analysis comes back to the system's vulnerability and the shortness of time following its loss before urban society unravels as a recurring theme in several other issues the RTP analyses.

    Just offered FYI:


    View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=aJh7Ye1Qvc8&ebc=ANyPxKrCIvdAshwKaR7EK6I5GiLwxd5Hs4lUJt2Qi8kn1bUBDS_RatyQ2azyyMs8kJmrpmI8ZL9Y07sMIULnlhPK6uxF8cUJpQ

    :waving: :cool:
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2019
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  13. Aceman

    Aceman

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    Do any of these "Take Down The Grid" planners consider the impact of damage control?

    while the grid could be taken down, and be out based on that for a while - it almost sounds to me like they do this under the assumption that every engineer and all necessary materials are also completely lost in the process and forever unavailable.
     
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  14. agtman

    agtman 10mm Philosopher

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    I guess it depends on which theory of Grid Take-Down plays out.

    If the cause is external (EMP; Russian/Chi-Com hackers, whatever), with only isolated regions affected (i.e, not nationwide), the NIAC Report seems to envision the same type of FEMA-response as happens with hurricanes - where massive federal resources are allocated to assist affected locales. Some small amount of crime (looting) occurs, but usually it's not widespread nor particularly violent.

    If it's nationwide, the Report is premised on well-prepped & stocked locales (the shelter-in-place/community-enclaves thing) doing the heavy lifting to get their populations through the long-term until the Feds can get each region of the grid back up and running. The report doesn't speculate on what level of chaos and crime would ensue, but the clear expectation is that normalcy would be restored by the Feds, in conjunction with private-sector Grid players (power companies), in a controlled manner and with state & local law enforcement providing security.

    If the Grid goes down - due to its inherent vulnerabilities - as the opening act of a CW2 scenario (the RTP's theory, discussed by John Mark on the vid), then all bets are off.

    The immediate domino effect in population-dense urban areas will be much like that after a blackout: general looting, pillaging, arsons, murders, rapes, robberies, etc. - in other words, exactly like Baltimore in the days following the Freddie-Gray incident.

    Local police won't be able to control the chaos (if they even try), which then forces the Feds to allocate resources and armed manpower to these additional 'fronts' of CW2, the characterization used by the RTP. It would be difficult to restore destroyed or crippled Grid infrastructure with bullets flying. Every Grid engineering unit would need huge security while making repairs, not to mention the security needed to guard the infrastructure site after repair.

    And as long as the Grid stays down - in whole or in part - the chaos would continue, eventually spreading to rural areas, or at least to those within a gas-tank's distance of a major population center.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2019
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  15. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

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    And....I think they underestimate the planning and logistics of the private sector. Major corporations have experience working in underdeveloped countries with fluctuating political and infrastructure situations. In addition they have the ability to move massive amounts of people and material around the country and around the globe. Believe me the private sector thinks about stuff like this.

    Think Walmart during Katrina moving hundreds of truck loads of stuff.

    Think the mobilization the private sector went through at the beginning of WWII and then multiply it by 100.

    I'm not saying that a grid shutdown won't be catastrophic but I have faith that it won't send us back to the middle ages.
     
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  16. agtman

    agtman 10mm Philosopher

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    No, not the Middle Ages.

    The better, or at least closer, historical analogy to the integrity of the power grid in a CW2 situation is the U.S. military's attempts to repair and then guard power and oil infrastructure sites in Iraq during the early insurgency when the bad guys were bombing them and then attacking repair convoys. Those convoys were usually guarded by Mil-contractors, not soldiers. I suppose the energy companies here could do something similar, hiring security teams if the Feds couldn't spare Mil units (Nat'l Guard) to baby-sit the engineer/repair teams.
     
  17. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

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    If I remember correctly there were Blackwater or Blackwater type security deployed during Katrina.

    All I know, based on first hand experience, is that big corporations have logistics teams and resources to handle stuff. I worked on a regional FEMA planning committee in SE Michigan home to the big three auto companies (who are some of the largest corporations in the world). The stuff they brought to the table was staggering. I represented the colleges and universities in the area but those guys blew anything we had (which was considerable in itself) away.

    There is a cliche' that says "what's good for business is good for America". Keeping America going is good for business. Business has too much invested in the US, they aren't going to pack up and walk away in time of crisis.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2019
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