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Getting Burned Out On Disaster Preparedness?

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September 06, 2011
Getting Burned Out On Disaster Preparedness? - 3

Ask any police officer or soldier how long they can stay on high alert, and you’ll get pretty much the same answer from all of them: Not too long. The body’s adrenaline runs out, the mind loses its sharpness, and since nothing has happened, it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that nothing will happen.

We can look at emergency preparedness in the same way. You put yourself on alert, then, after nothing has happened for a while, you find yourself numb, burned out and no longer concerned at all.

I have heard many of my survival students who have military and law enforcement backgrounds express to me how hard it is to stay on high alert for days or weeks at a time. But I never expected to hear it on the 5 o’clock news from someone who was tired of preparing for disasters. Yet there it was last week. Someone who had battened down for what the news was predicting would be the “Storm of the Century,” and then experienced no damage, was explaining to the reporter that he was tired of preparing for all these emergencies. He wasn’t going to bother anymore.

For the people who lost family, friends, homes and property to Hurricane Irene, the reasons to prepare for future emergencies are obvious. The storm has sadly led to the deaths of at least 46 people in 13 states, and hurricane damage could total $7 billion, according to Kinetic Analysis Corp. It seems unimaginable to put your head in the sand, and think that nothing bad could ever happen to you and your family. And yet, people ignore the dangers around them every day.

Of the people who readied themselves for this year’s devastating tornados, wildfires, hurricanes and earthquakes only to not at all be affected, I wonder what percent of them are burned out from worrying and jaded about preparedness. And how many people never even cared in the first place? And who will take care of these people if they ever do need help? Their prepared neighbors or the local government might help them out. But the answer might also be that no one will be in a position to help, if enough people in every community stop caring.

What category do you fall into? Are you burned out from preparedness? Or are you dedicated to always being prepared, regardless of how many false alarms you endure? How do you stay sharp and ready to deal with disaster?

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from Steve H 12/27/2013 at 09:36pm

We need a national day of preparedness--like the way people are starting to use the daylight savings switch as the time to change batteries in smoke detectors, but much, much bigger.

I'm more oriented towards community preparedness--which would include and support individuals prepping to the much higher degrees that I see discussed here and elsewhere online--but by community preparedness I'm thinking of every household having it's week's worth of food and water and other supplies/equip. to 'bug in', as well as an evac plan (including pets) and bug out bags with key documents, and so on. Imagine if the biggest problem for a hurricane was the traffic--if everything else was battened down, and we just lost a few work days while it blew over.

I know others have different SHTF scenarios and are focused more on their own preparedness, and I don't mean to call for change away from that way of prepping, but I hope some day prepping won't be something people think of as an 'extra' task to do when this or that storm or whatever threatens. I hope it'll be like putting up storm windows and raking the yard is part of the changing of the seasons.

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from jcarlin 9/6/2011 at 01:30pm

I wouldn't say I'm burnt, though I'd be happy with a week's break in rain. My place is normally high and dry but our creek hit the second highest gauge reading ever recorded and was about 20' horizontally and 3' in elevation from my front door. We had an evac plan and had already moved a lot of items up off of the barn floor and a bit in the house, but still scrambled a bit to do as much as possible in the last hours before the creek started to recede. I feel for anyone who wasn't so lucky, but I don't see how a lack of preparation will help your peace of mind.

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from gmarkum 9/6/2011 at 11:47am

I don't get burned out because I do not do my prep work in a state of high alert. I do my prepping as more of a hobby. One I take seriously mind you but I get it done as I can. I have to do it that way or it won't get done. When I go to retrieve my kit I will be on high alert, not when I build it.

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from gmarkum 9/6/2011 at 11:47am

I don't get burned out because I do not do my prep work in a state of high alert. I do my prepping as more of a hobby. One I take seriously mind you but I get it done as I can. I have to do it that way or it won't get done. When I go to retrieve my kit I will be on high alert, not when I build it.

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from jcarlin 9/6/2011 at 01:30pm

I wouldn't say I'm burnt, though I'd be happy with a week's break in rain. My place is normally high and dry but our creek hit the second highest gauge reading ever recorded and was about 20' horizontally and 3' in elevation from my front door. We had an evac plan and had already moved a lot of items up off of the barn floor and a bit in the house, but still scrambled a bit to do as much as possible in the last hours before the creek started to recede. I feel for anyone who wasn't so lucky, but I don't see how a lack of preparation will help your peace of mind.

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from Steve H 12/27/2013 at 09:36pm

We need a national day of preparedness--like the way people are starting to use the daylight savings switch as the time to change batteries in smoke detectors, but much, much bigger.

I'm more oriented towards community preparedness--which would include and support individuals prepping to the much higher degrees that I see discussed here and elsewhere online--but by community preparedness I'm thinking of every household having it's week's worth of food and water and other supplies/equip. to 'bug in', as well as an evac plan (including pets) and bug out bags with key documents, and so on. Imagine if the biggest problem for a hurricane was the traffic--if everything else was battened down, and we just lost a few work days while it blew over.

I know others have different SHTF scenarios and are focused more on their own preparedness, and I don't mean to call for change away from that way of prepping, but I hope some day prepping won't be something people think of as an 'extra' task to do when this or that storm or whatever threatens. I hope it'll be like putting up storm windows and raking the yard is part of the changing of the seasons.

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Write a Comment Your comment (200 characters or less):