Guest Post- Danielle M.
The Colorado flooding earlier this year washed away highways, interstates and even small towns. In its wake, it left behind another lesson on disaster clean up and preparedness.
Picture Credit- www.washingtonpost.com
Heavy rainfall hit on September 9, and didn’t let up until Sept. 13. The storm front was trapped against the Rockies, which meant four days of heavy rain. Rainfall totals equaled 14.62 inches — about two-thirds of the annual rainfall for the area.
Nine people died in the flooding, and many, many more lost their homes. Eighteen towns, including Denver, were hit by flash flooding. Smaller towns high in the mountains were hit particularly hard, and assistance was a long time (Read more....)
by Stacey Thompson
Hurricanes and typhoons are very powerful storm systems that pack powerful winds and rain that have the capability of causing massive destruction to property and loss of life. For us, two hurricanes have left their mark on our collective memories, hurricanes Katrina and Sandy
Whichever side of the fence you are on about global warming, it is an undeniable fact that the more erratic and forceful weather patterns are connected to this phenomenon. The ferocity and frequency of these destructive events are increasing, and thus, more people are affected, their property and lives at the mercy of nature’s wrath.
If anything, physical evacuation from the affected area is probably the safest thing you can do, provided you have both the luxury of time ahead of the actual event, the proper logistics, and a place to stay away from the potential calamity. For those that do not have such an option, or insist on staying in their homes, it is imperative that the proper preparations (Read more....)
by Stacey Thompson
Typhoons, earthquakes, floods, and a host of man-made disasters are a regular thing nowadays. Our lack of empathy for the environment, as well as each other, has facilitated an increasingly dangerous world for us.
In many of these situations, there really is no recourse but to evacuate from the affected area. For those who are fortunate enough to have their own home, and have enough space in their garage or yard to accommodate another vehicle, my suggestion is to have an emergency vehicle that is equipped to handle emergencies of various kinds.
This vehicle need not be expensive. A second-hand van or station wagon with the proper accessories and add-ons will more than do. A neighborhood association can pitch in to maintain and add the necessary upgrades to the van; services like American Van Equipment can provide the proper parts and installation at affordable rates.
Top Rack & Ladder
This is probably the most basic, and at the same time, the most useful feature you can (Read more....)
December through March — the winter season — are the peak months for home fire deaths. Although being able to survive and cope with a disaster is great, avoiding disaster altogether is even better. Like they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
National Fire Prevention Week is a good time to think about keeping your home safe while you keep it warm. Space heaters can be a good way to heat individual rooms or zones within your home, but using them requires a bit of common sense, too.
First of all, when you buy a space heater, be sure to get one that has been evaluated by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) or another nationally recognized lab. UL listed appliances undergo a further level of third-party safety testing. You should also buy a space heater that will automatically shut off if it's tipped over.
When you're using a space heater, put these safety guidelines in place:
· Place a space heater on level ground well away from flammable materials like blankets, upholstery and curtains; as a rule of thumb, these combustible items should be kept at least three feet away (Read more....)
According to a study conducted by Moneysupermarket.com, energy customers generally use approximately 40 percent of their annual consumption throughout the winter months. The start of winter brings with it a spate of increasing prices related to energy consumption. Energy consumers could face quarterly bills of £530. Use the tips below to make your home safer and more energy efficient.
1. Caulk Baseboards to Eliminate Draughts
You need to check for draughts. Moisten your hand and then run it along the edges of your interior door and window trim. You should also perform this test on your exterior wall baseboards. The draught feels like wind blowing through a straw. While an eighth of an inch may seem tiny, if you multiply that by the length of your baseboards, it is a long, continuous gap.
2. Light Switch and Outlet Gaskets
Cold air leaks into your house via your light switches and outlets. There are foam gaskets available that fit inside your outlets and light switches. These gaskets are an inexpensive, quick and easy way to block some of the cold (Read more....)
These indicators will give you anywhere from a few days to a few months of warning that things are about to change drastically.
1) Interest rates on US Treasuries go up steeply, and/or suddenly
The definition of ‘defaulting’ on it’s debt means the US Gov’t isn’t able to pay the interest on the almost $16 trillion it owes. Currently interest rates are at all-time lows – as many homeowners are enjoying by re-financing their homes at lower rates. Interest on the debt is currently the smaller of the four biggest expenses the US Gov’t has. As interest rates rise, the interest expense will get bigger – and this will be very difficult for a Gov’t that is already deficit spending way beyond its means.
You want to keep an eye on the current rates on Treasuries for two reasons:
a) Increasing rates will require a debt laden Gov’t to barrow more and will accelerate inflation and the date of collapse. This is a 6-12 month red flag. As of today, rates are slowly rising although they are still very low.
b) A sudden and sustained spike in the interest rates indicates that there are fewer buyers of US debt. Without the ability to barrow more money or rollover the (Read more....)
A little preemptive planning turns car trouble from your worst nightmare to a minor inconvenience. If your vehicle blows a tire, runs out of gas or loses a battery charge, don't panic. There are simple steps you can take to keep your car alive, on the road and away from the curb.
If your car is new or you purchased an extended warranty or service plan, it probably included some type of roadside assistance. That typically consists of services like towing, battery and tire replacements, lockout assistance and so on. If your car is older or out of warranty, there are a few places you can still sign up for service. Most insurance companies offer it as an add-on to your coverage, but make sure you know exactly what you're paying for since each company varies in offering.
Another option is a company like AAA. For $55 per year, they offer the same services and partner with different service centers across the country, making costs a bit lower if you need to have work done once you're towed there. If you prefer your new wheels to come from other retailers such as Continental tires, AAA will still take you there. The (Read more....)