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Below are the 15 most recent journal entries recorded in Seattle In Peril's LiveJournal:

Friday, December 22nd, 2006
2:19 pm
There is apparently a contest on to name the windstorm that hit Western Washington last week. Lacking a convenient event to pin it to (as in the inaugural day storm)... I don't think I've heard suggestions other than "Blow me".

I had a pretty easy storm of it, personally -- the barge was a bit of a wild ride, but lost neither internet nor power. And one of the lessons of ten years at the Woodinville house is that power isn't something that can be counted on. At least there. (I miss the brick oven most of all. *sniff*)

Anyhow, minor peril in the grand scheme of things, but enough to get thinking about it.

How did you all fare? What things proved incredibly useful? What things did you want to kick yourself for? What are you going to change before next time?

In my family, I was surprised that I was really the only person with substantial amounts of camping gear. I also spent a lot of time showing people how to make lanterns out of glass jars (simple, but really useful) and talking about where to get candles cheap...

What were your experiences?
Monday, June 5th, 2006
3:53 pm
escape routes
Should the shit really hit the fan, my emergency plan is to head to Spokane. Unfortunately, there is a serious bottleneck getting across the Cascades -- I've seen traffic on Snoqualamie bumper-to-bumper just on a holiday weekend. What I'd like to do is find a less obvious way to get to get across the mountains. Is anyone interested, sometime this summer, in exploring obscure forest service roads? They wouldn't be much help in the winter, but it would be nice to have something available.
Monday, May 8th, 2006
9:45 am
Discussion Notes
Here is the third post.

We talked about a lot of things last night, came up with some ideas, and had a good time over all (at least I did). It was a good start, but it's not enough. I would like to host, or convince someone else to host, an on-going set of discussions delving into some of the issues that we only touched on last night. I will post when I have a firmer date for my next one. I will also try to post some of the research that I intend to do as I do it.

One of the things I realized last night is that surviving any disaster, from a major earthquake that causes the infrastructure of Seattle to collapse for a couple weeks to an erruption at Yellowstone that ends civilization as we know it, is going to be about the people that you have around you: not just the hulking survivalist that can make a radio out of coconuts, but the woman that can take care of the wayward children, the old man that remembers how to trap squirrels, or the young child that keeps everyone going with a smile.

So now I need to find that people that will help keep me and my family alive, bring them together, and work on some sort of plan.

Who's with me?
9:00 am
Discussion Notes
Here is the second in a series of posts about the Discussion that I hosted last night.

What to do about itCollapse )
Please feel free to comment and/or add your thoughts.
8:49 am
Discussion Notes
Here is the first in a series of posts about the Discussion that I hosted last night.

What type of disasters?Collapse )

Please feel free to comment with others.
Sunday, May 7th, 2006
7:52 pm
Thursday, May 4th, 2006
12:45 pm
Discussion Event

What: Seattle in Peril
When: Sunday, May 7th @ 4:30
Where: My House - Email me if you need directions

After New Orleans and a few discussions I had with friends I started to wonder about what would happen in Seattle and how would we deal with it. Understanding that more input is a good thing I wanted to get people together to discuss their thoughts and maybe even come up with some basic plans.

I plan to structure the discussion around 3 basic types of disasters:
Level 1: A minor disruption in services less than 7 days
Level 2: A Major disruption in services greater than 2 weeks and/or requiring evacuation
Level 3: An extreme breakdown in services leading to the collapse of civilization as we know it

Of course there are other levels possible and I realize this is just an arbitrary distinction, but I thought it a good place to start.

The discussion will start at 4:30 in my living room. I will do my best to moderate.
We are a pet free and a smoke free house.
I will make spaghetti for dinner. Please bring something to share if you would like something else. We also have water to drink, so bring drinkables if you want something else.
Please RSVP if you haven't already, but it's okay to just show up.
Wednesday, May 3rd, 2006
11:52 am
I'm am going to host a discussion on Seattle and issues with different disasters this weekend.

Please go to my main journal to answer a poll about timing and such.
Thursday, April 20th, 2006
6:42 pm
Discussion: Seattle in Peril
So there is interest in a discussion on potential disasters and what we should do about something if it happens.

Are people free on Saturday May 6th?

I was thinking mid-afternoon until whenever.
Let me know. The 29th didn't work and I would like people to be able to come.
Cross posted to sar_anon
1:32 pm
I've been thinking about hosting a discussion on potential disasters and what we should do about something if it happens.

After listening to a discussion at this years Norwescon it is on my mind again and I would like to do it sooner rather than later.

1) Are people interested in participating?
2) Are people free on Saturday April 29th?

Let me know. If enough people are interested and free then I will host.
Cross posted to my personal journal sar_anon
Thursday, February 2nd, 2006
2:01 am
Evacuating without a car
What are some options for evacuating quickly if one doesn't own a car?

We sold ours a few years ago. Between Seattle's buses, a Flexcar membership, and living near downtown we've never looked back, though we occasionally rent a car for road trips. But Flexcar doesn't handle stress very well: most weekends you have to book ahead, or plan on traveling into the downtown core to pick up an unused car from an office building. (Besides, if one expects to ultimately pay for the Flexcar use, borrowing one for a few days would be very expensive.) Our friends are largely in the same situation we are, or live far enough out that driving into town during a disaster may not be wise.

Would renting a car be feasible, on short notice and during an emergency? Are there evacuation carpools?
Tuesday, January 10th, 2006
3:11 pm
So what is the scope of this group?

A new acquaintance stopped by my place recently to pick up a sourdough starter, and mentioned that she and a number of her friends had been working to acquire any number of skills so as to more comfortably survive the apocalypse. (The apocalypse, she explained, probably wouldn't get around to happening, but hey, all these neat skills.)

I've tended to have a hobby along the same lines, though I've blamed mine on a mixture of 70's era craftiness, and 80's era expecting civilization as we know it to do itself in. And again, cool skills. I've come to suspect that a lot of people's dreams, and even nightmares of some kind of apocalypse are rooted in escapism, and an escapism that is in part a reaction against the complexity of our world, and its emphasis on specialization. However, in that sense, it strikes me as a potentially healthy impulse, generalists being, for the most part, more adaptable than specialists. (And hey, I'm pretty biased to believe that most of the really interesting stuff is interdisciplinary anyway.)

So... that scope question again, and I guess I'm asking both about the group, in general, and where individual fall in the group:

Emergency preparedness? (I'm thinking that three day window or so -- first aid, rudimentary shelter, yer basic camping skills, etc.)

Infrastructure support? Can you be useful in restoring power, communications, transportation, etc? Can you be useful in helping to create interim infrastructure (radio operators being an obvious example)

Out and out survival skills? I'm thinking here of the building yourself a cabin, making your own tools, growing and killing your own food, etc. etc.

Am I missing major catagories?

Writing this, it occurs to me that I probably know more people who have substantial skills in out and out survival than in infrastructure support skills... though practically, we're more likely to see severe infrastructure damages than get dropped down in the middle of the woods with nothing.
Thursday, December 29th, 2005
10:25 am
classes and materials
I saw this today on the City of Renton's web site, and thought it was pertinent to this topic.

The Renton Fire Department offers free Disaster Preparedness classes, which include handouts, display kits, and an audio visual presentation. Instructors can either use our Training Center facility, located at 1900 Lind Avenue SW, or they can go out to your chosen site within the City of Renton.

Minimum class number is 8, with a maximum set at 30. Please contact Headquarters at 425.430.7000 or e-mail cdesmith@ci.renton.wa.us for further information.

Other information can be found by reading the Disaster Preparation Handbook published by the Washington State Emergency Management Division and the Department of Health.

If you are interested in obtaining any booklets or specific information, please contact the fire department at 425.430.7000 or e-mail jbray@ci.renton.wa.us
Thursday, November 17th, 2005
9:41 am
What kind of Disasters
So what kind of disasters do you think are likely for the Seattle area?

These should be within the realm of at least a 25% probability. We'll save wild speculation for later.
I'll post my own thoughts when I get some time later.
Monday, November 14th, 2005
6:18 am
1st Post
Why I set up this community by sar_anon

It's kind of like a 'what I did with my summer vacation' essay, but a little more serious.

There have been disasters throughout the history of our race. They have been recorded in cave paintings, mythology, and the earliest writings. Some of these have been local. Some have been global. As our race has advanced we've been better able to track and records these events. So too we've been able to quantify and even predict some of the disasters that have happened.

Our technology base has been able to help us a lot in dealing with such disasters, but it has also hurt us. Distributed shipping and inventory management has left most cities less than 48 hours away from food riots, civil unrest, and infrastructure collapse. Electrical service, high pressure water delivery, and sewage removal are analogous to our own internal arteries, veins, and lymph systems; and like our bodies any significant damage to these systems will cause severe trauma and possibly death. As a society we've become dependant on certain 'facts' of daily life and while they improve our quality of living standard, they also make us vulnerable.

As the recent hurricanes (Katrina and Rita) have shown us, there is a vulnerability to living in a large city. Once the services that most people take for granted fail, and combined with whatever mitigating factors have occurred, a city can devolve into panic and barbarism. There can be huge loss of life, destruction of property, and risk in such a situation. How we deal with the situation will significantly effect our ability to survive it and how we plan will significantly improve our chances of dealing with it.

Living is Seattle we have certain issues. The city sits atop a subduction zone. There are volcanos that ring the city. The city borders an ocean inlet. There is limited access to the city itself and the region in general. Large parts of the city and surrounding areas are built on mud flats, silt flats, or debris fields. We have a huge population and significant transportation and services choke points.

There are any number of possible disasters that could be very bad for the city. Some of these potential disasters are due or over due on the geologic time scale. Whether or not they happen it is fair to say that most people are not prepared. In fact it may be generous to say they are not prepared.

This group was set up to discuss the potential problems and more importantly the potential solutions so that we do not fall into the unprepared category of Seattlites. It may help. It may not. But at least it will give a chance.
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