roof rescueThere’s plenty of thundering, blowing, raining and hailing going on all over the country–though some areas sure could use MORE rain. I don’t know about you, but I look at such instances as if they are giving us a much needed “trial run” to test out our level of preparedness amidst a  “surprise” situation that Mother Nature likes to throw at us.  And there are plenty of “trial runs” available. As we’ve already seen played out in the national news, the storm and tornado season is in full swing–not to mention the lightening strikes that are causing so many fires. Each year, the U.S. gets an average of 5.9 hurricanes, 1,000 tornadoes and 10,000 severe thunderstorms! But you and I both know that there are a lot of folks doing some CRAZY things and appear to have more spit than sense when it comes to being ready for a severe storm.


playing in floodwatersYou know who I’m talking about. Perhaps it’s one of those crazy people who get within 100 feet of a huge tornado just so that they can post the footage to YouTube. Or maybe you’re familiar with those folks who go and purchase tons of batteries, beer, and band-aids at the last minute and THEN, after the storm has passed, they take it all back to the store for a refund. (Well, less the beer, I suppose.) I actually remember that happening after Hurricane Sandy–all of the city folks going crazy and buying all of the things that they should have had on hand in the first place, taking it all back the next day for a refund!  That’s just nutzo!!  I don’t know about you, but I’m looking at that scenario and shaking my head thinking “Hello! Mother Nature just gave you a dress rehearsal so you’re not caught so vulnerable the NEXT time–and yes, there WILL be a NEXT TIME–and yet you’re going to negate what little bit of preparedness you accomplished as a result of this experience and return it all??!” Yes, I truly did yell that at the TV one night.


hurricane sandyThen of course there’s the situation in which a hurricane is predicted in an area that we all know is prone to hurricanes–and yet when the forecast comes, everyone is freaking out, going to the hardware store and buying up nails and plywood and such. I still don’t understand that one. It’s not like these folks woke up one day and realized that they were IN a hurricane prone area, right? So why in the world don’t they just keep the nails and the plywood and such on hand in the first place instead of subjecting themselves to the craziness that goes on in the hardware store right before a coastal storm?? My husband would call that “dumb squared”.


And then, of course,  you’ve got the people who JUST buy the beer and the cigarettes and decide that they’re just going to party their way through the disaster. *Sigh* Such persons give me the greatest angst as they later risk the lives of good men and women who have to RESCUE their behinds from off the top of the roof! (That one makes me grrrr…)
How about the folks who play in flood waters that are moving fast? How about the woman who says she’s going to stay put because she doesn’t want to miss the latest episode of “Honey Boo Boo”? (True story!) How about the folks who think that they’re actually going to be ABLE to find food and batteries and such in the stores or the folks who say “FEMA will rescue me!” –as if it absolves them from taking any responsibility for their own safety and well being? I won’t share any more with you because in doing so I might just ruin YOUR CHANCE to win a great giveaway we’ve got to share with you.


stabil logoYou see, today the good folks at STA-BIL and Start Your Engines! have a little giveaway that they are going to give to one of YOU who makes a comment below and shares an example of what NOT to do when faced with a severe storm warning.  That’s right! You just might be rewarded with $90 worth of prizes, as well of some great storm preparation education, just for sharing some of your “shaking your head” moments.  (Let’s face it. There aren’t a lot of audiences who will actually GET the “dumb squared” part of your scenario. So now’s your chance to unload! 🙂 And I’m even going to let you “unload” as many as three times. That’s right. You will be entered to win each time you comment BUT–you can only comment a maximum of 3 times and each time you comment it MUST BE A DIFFERENT scenario of what kind of dumb things that people do amidst a severe storm warning.


Just to be clear–each time you comment ON THIS ARTICLE you’ll be entering to have your name drawn in this STA-BIL/Start Your Engines! Giveaway, but each comment MUST have a different scenario. Got it? Good!


This special Storm Preparation Giveaway Prize is provided by the makers of STA-BIL and Start Your Engines! which helps keep small engine equipment like generators and chain saws start your engines logo.jpworking when you need them most!  And one of our lucky readers is going to with the following package that STA-BIL and Start Your Engines! has put together–a value of more than $90!

This special Storm Preparation Giveaway Includes: Storm Prep Giveaway Image


So go down below and share with us some of your experiences with the dumb things people do amidst a severe storm warning–posted by midnight on July 12th, 2013, and you just might find yourself a benefactor of those crazy things that people do. After all, it’s about time, right? *grin*  (The winner will be announced the following week).

Disclaimer: The items featured in this giveaway were provided by Gold Eagle Co. and will be sent to the winner directly by Gold Eagle Co. I have not been compensated for this post in any other way. I’m just doing this because the nice folks at Gold Eagle Co. put together this nice opportunity for one of you. *grin*


Jennifer Ellis · July 8, 2013 at 10:50 pm

I try to stay indoors during any storm. I am afraid of storms.

    Lyn Parker · July 9, 2013 at 12:13 am

    Living in an area where most folks evacuate TO, we have extra workload during storms. If you live in an evacuation area, PLEASE have a plan of where to go. Lodging fills rapidly. Call and book ahead. Failure to plan adds to everyone’s stress.

Christina Eckhart · July 8, 2013 at 10:55 pm

I don’t think people prep for their pets enough. I have a human and dog first aid kit, crates, carriers, leashes, collars, tags and all of their vet records ready to go if ever needed. I often see people stashing a bunch of processed food as if that’s going to save them. And the whole “buy all of the milk” phenomenon is ridiculous! Milk won’t even last when there is no electric!

Ann · July 8, 2013 at 10:56 pm

People that think a couple of bottles of water is enough to get them through if things go badly. They just don’t understand that they need a lot of water for each person for drinking, plus they need water for cooking and washing up.

stacy overacker-Bailey · July 8, 2013 at 11:01 pm

OK, here is what I just love! *eyeroll* When it gets cold and we get snow and ice on the roads, every redneck within 200 miles decides they dont need to be prepared, they have a BIG 4×4 truck. Then in the eleventh hour, Jim Bob, and Billy Jo take off in the middle of a snowstorm to get bread and milk, cause NO ONE and I mean NO ONE can survive a snowstorm without MILK SANDWICHES???? IT DRIVES ME CRAZY, and when the weather and roads clear up and you head towards town, there are 15 or more BIG BAD 4X4’S decorating the side of the road. Sometimes, I dont want to live on this planet anymore…hahah…It felt good to complain about that!!!

    Kellene Bishop · July 8, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    “milk sandwiches” LOL

    Denise in NJ · July 9, 2013 at 3:07 am

    I always thought it was French Toast that is the meal of choice during a storm. Around these parts, it’s milk, bread, and eggs that fly out of the stores. A week before Hurricane Sandy I told my family it was going to hit us. Ok, so I’m a weather geek. I read weather maps and data. I’m a National Weather Service Trained Spotter. So I know a thing or three about storms. The day before the storm was scheduled to hit, my mom asked me to take her to the grocery store. Of course I did. It was better than watching your favorite sit-com. People were harried and running around the store haphazardly like they’d never been there before and didn’t know where to find anything. Then there was the bread aisle. Completely barren save for 2 loaves of bread that had expired 2 days earlier. Mom picked one up and saw the date on it and went to put it back and a woman snatched it out of her hand while another snatched the last loaf from the shelf. Neither of them checked the date on the wrapper, they just put it in their carts and went off running. During the entire time we were in the store, mom kept asking me why I wasn’t buying anything. I smiled as I told her I didn’t need to. “What about milk?” I laughed as I told her the power was going to go out and the milk will spoil. We were standing in the checkout line for over an hour while mom complained about how long it was taking. I just turned to her and said “I told you a week ago this was coming, why did you wait until the last minute?” Her response was because she didn’t need it last week so why would she buy something she doesn’t need.

Angela Belcher · July 8, 2013 at 11:03 pm

I 2004, when all the hurricanes were criss-crossing the state, a woman in Florida had her husband tie a rope around her waist and duct tape her wrists and ankles to a small tarp. The goal was to fly her like a kite. It didn’t work. The husband didn’t weigh enough and they ended up getting dragged across the yard towards the canal. No injuries.

    Kellene Bishop · July 8, 2013 at 11:16 pm

    WOW! How in the world did they avoid injuries. Good grief!

Melinda · July 8, 2013 at 11:08 pm

Oh, let me count the ways! =) Not having any kind of supplies in their car in case they get caught out in a storm…nothing worse than being stuck in the car with no food, blankets, or even basic tools like an ice scraper!

Margie Kaiser · July 8, 2013 at 11:09 pm

Yell at the cameraman because no one is around to help them with food, water and shelter. They had warning that the hurricane was coming.

Phyliss · July 8, 2013 at 11:19 pm

The thing that gets me is the neighbor not battening down the yard when a big one is coming whether it be a blizzard or a hurricane. Their stuff is going to blow everywhere and possibly break windows or dent cars, not to mention the fact that they are going to lose it and a lot of it is junk. There will be chairs and flower pots and garbage cans and goodness knows what else flying down the block like missles. They make it dangerous for the rest of us. These same neighbors will not bother with extra food or water and insist : Oh it is just going to blow over!!!

Danielle · July 8, 2013 at 11:26 pm

How bout all the folks who buy the stores out of milk, eggs and bread but will have no way to cook their French Toast?

Kathy Monahan · July 8, 2013 at 11:27 pm

I love the folks who “prepare” for a storm by stocking enough food for one day and plan on cooking up a gourmet feast. During Hurricane Sandy, most of my friends went crazy to prepare their one storm dinner. They exerted all kinds of energy preparing one big meal (which is the most cooking they’ve done in months), and posted pictures of it all over Facebook. My facebook page looked like the Food Porn network. Then, by the second day, they were out driving around looking for any open restaurant because they were completely wiped out by their one day of cooking and have no idea how to prepare food with no electricity, in addition to have no extra food available.

    Patty · December 16, 2013 at 7:28 am

    Kathy, I was just hysterical
    Kathy, I was just hysterical after reading this post…especially about the FB page looking like Food Porn network!! CLASSIC!

Bonnie DiCrocco · July 8, 2013 at 11:36 pm

Living in Florida, I am always surprised at the ways people avoid being prepared — but the dumbest is folks who KNOW they live in flood prone areas who leave their cars right there anyway instead of moving them a matter of a few more yards even to avoid the potential damage not only to the vehicle itself but to anything or anyone else that floating few tons might connect with.

Tim Baker · July 8, 2013 at 11:36 pm

In San Antonio, and it’s suburbs, pretty far inland, during a hurricane at the coast I’ve often seen this behavior, people buying “supplies” and then returning them to the store after the urgency had passed.

Kari · July 8, 2013 at 11:38 pm

People think they need to hop in their 4×4 and speed around after blizzards when the roads are barely passable. I am much safer in my front wheel drive car with good tires that I drive every day. I know how it handles at every speed and in all conditions. If I can’t get places safely in my sedan I don’t need to go at all. I am stocked at home.

mary anne · July 8, 2013 at 11:46 pm

“Hey, let’s go down and watch the tsunami roll in!” Guy was washed away in California doing this. I’ve been through many hurricanes and floods in Houston. Dumb are those who drive into standing water (underpass) and their cars go under. Hurricane parties where everyone stays in the hurricane warning area and gets drunk, dumber!

Joan Hackney · July 8, 2013 at 11:50 pm

Do not pick up objects in the yard that could become flying missels (garbage cans, patio furniture, potted plants etc., (you get the picture). I live in Fl. so I’ve had those items hit my house.

Paula · July 8, 2013 at 11:53 pm

There are a couple of times that come to mind… But in 2004 both Hurricane Jeanne and Francis hit Florida..The kids and I were totally trying to be prepared, making sure everything was secured. Growing up in the north, we always filled our bathtubs with water in case we lost power, so that we could flush our toilets. My husband said, “We don’t need to fill the tubs, because we have the pool outside and we can just get water from there to flush the toilets!” It didn’t take us long to realize we could not go outside DURING the hurricane to get water for the toilets…. We learned our lesson..

    Kellene Bishop · July 9, 2013 at 12:16 am

    ROFL!!! Glad you learned THAT lesson!!

Joan Hackney · July 8, 2013 at 11:57 pm

When the storm is over, going outside in bare feet (lots of glass and sewage, not to mention downed lines)!!

Kelly · July 8, 2013 at 11:57 pm

After a flood, when the roads are barely cleared and in many cases unsafe due to being undercut from water, people go driving around sightseeing to view the damage. *sigh*

Joan Hackney · July 8, 2013 at 11:59 pm

Price gouging and looting!

Jeanne · July 9, 2013 at 12:01 am

We recently visited my sister and her husband, who live on an east coast waterfront. We had several severe thunderstorms during our visit, and she told us that if the electricity goes off “Don’t flush the toilets. The electric pumps won’t work, so we won’t have water until the electric goes back on.” Yet they have no backup water, not even cases of water bottles. They’ve already been through two hurricanes recently where the electric was off for days: what will it take to get them on board? If I win this emergency kit, I should send it straight to her!

Debbie · July 9, 2013 at 12:04 am

2008 Hurricane Ike. A couple decided to ride out the hurricane in Galveston in their business that jutted out into the ocean on a pier. Needless to say, this did not end well and resulted in a night of terror as Ike tore their building apart. They did survive, but hopefully with a healthy respect for storms.

Cheryl · July 9, 2013 at 12:07 am

Ok, here’s my pet-peeve when it comes to storms, or any kind of survival situation for that matter: People that claim to be such good Christians, but refuse to get prepared because they say there’s no need to prepare because, get this…the Lord will take care of them. That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard when it comes to any kind of survival situation! The Lord gave us His Word, & common sense. Proverbs 22: 3 says, “The wise see danger ahead & avoid it, but fools keep going & get into trouble.” (NCV) And usually He gives us plenty of time to prepare! But these people refuse to do so, which is very irresponsible & disobedient. Would you lay down on a railroad track & say that the Lord wouldn’t let the train hit you? Well, refusing to prepare for a storm, or whatever survival situation is like doing just that. Even the ants & the squirrels work all summer to store up food so they will survive the winter!

Kelly · July 9, 2013 at 12:07 am

Oops, now I see the subject is a storm warning, not an actual storm. Let’s see. How about windsurfing when a hurricane is coming to catch the “great” wind and waves? I know a guy who did that when Hurricane Gloria was bearing down on the east coast. It was bad enough that we were sent home early from work and he headed right for the water.

Kelly · July 9, 2013 at 12:21 am

How about farmers riding around on tractors frantically trying to finish making hay when the sky is dark and there is thunder and lightning and wind whipping. I know getting the hay before rain in is important, but hello – sitting on a tall tractor in the middle of a field with lightning flashing?

Shirley vanek · July 9, 2013 at 12:25 am

When people live by the ocean and they invite all their friends over for a party. The storm gets so bad that they call 911 to save them.

Shannon Smith · July 9, 2013 at 12:25 am

Where I live I’m more worried about an earthquake rather than a storm, but you never know! Any way I can keep my supplies up I will

Maggie · July 9, 2013 at 12:37 am

seeing people stock up on food items that will go bad quickly if the power is off after a storm, or they won’t be able to cook without power

Steph · July 9, 2013 at 12:57 am

ok so one of my favs was the tornado siren going off (for a good 5 mins) and people coming in and out of the Chinese restaurant grabbing their order and driving away. the owners offered their small basement which we accepted (we were already there eating when it suddenly turned from yuck to bad). not to mention the people still calling in their orders while sirens were going off… ugh sometimes you just wanna say “really?!?!”

Mary Stone · July 9, 2013 at 12:58 am

you know one of the things that really gets to me… it’s like “watch me but don’t do as I do” type thing. These weather people that stand out IN the hurricane to show just how strong the wind is blowing and are getting pounded by the rain and all sorts of junk is blowing past them while they are being battered back and forth ARE JUST PLAIN STUPID!

Steph · July 9, 2013 at 1:00 am

a recent fav was power is out and we have a tornado warning- people were getting in their cars and driving to the main stores and asking if anyone was open. one guy ran outta gas while trying to get that answered and of course was then stuck in the area since the gas stations were closed due to no power. not prepared on several areas…

Nancy Kosling · July 9, 2013 at 1:03 am

I have nothing to add to human madness. I commend the great input from all over the country. It was fun to read. I set aside 10% of my income for emergency preparedness monthly. As a Mormon preparing for life’s madness is part of our religious admonitions.

I live in hurricane alley on the Gulf coast of Texas. If a major store looks like it will come in I book at a major hotel chain in San Antonio (150 miles away) that will take dogs and has doggy walk and poo areas. I book three rooms and cram family members and pets in them. Before we leave home we remove everything from lower shelves, book cases, and stack all chest-r-drawers on top of the dressers. To save bedding, we stack it on top of the drawers or load in the cars for the family at the hotel. Never enough comfort items… bring your own comfort. I have the WaterBob that fills 50-100 gallons in the bath tub which keeps water potable as well as 50-60 1 and 5 gallon water containers around the house. Each of my sons do the same so if we come home to a mop and bucket clean up we will have fresh water. We bring food, dog food and extra water in the cars too. We even bring the camp stove and propane to heat minor foods on the hotel balcony if the hotel loses power. Last hurricane bounced over us and spun 12 tornadoes in San Antonio, Texas, just where we would have gone. Weather reports and radios with batteries are worth their weight in gold.

Steph · July 9, 2013 at 1:14 am

and lastly (but certainly not least) driving down the interstate on a BAD winter night. young lady in an expensive car was on the side of the road, pulled over thinkin eh maybe she’d want to sit in a warm car while waiting on a tow. got out approached the car she was very grateful i showed up. the accident had crunched her front end- smashing her phone into the dash and effectively killing it. wearing a tshirt and jeans no blanket in the car and barely what i’d call a warm jacket. told me she’d been sitting there for over an hour and no one would stop (mind you NO heat on a negative temp night w/ howling gusts). she said “thought i was going to die in the cold” so i gave her my car blanket and my hot coffee i had, i checked her over quick for injury (just a few scratches and bruises- probably a broken finger but not compound), gave her my cell to call her parent(s) and drove her to the hospital…. i have never since not gotten in a car (in winter) w/o a winter car kit. but she had nothing- no way to signal for assistance, no source of food or heat/warmth, no real chance… unless someone stopped. that was an essential situation for me to start considering preparedness.

Steph · July 9, 2013 at 1:18 am

oh and BTW there was a winter storm warning out that night

Anna · July 9, 2013 at 1:24 am

The best one I guess is we have winter here every year (Ohio) and it just amazes me how many people are lined up getting snow shovels when a snow storm is predicted. I just scratch my head every year when I see the hardware stores are sold out and people are waiting for a new supply to come in. Same thing with snow melt.

Anna · July 9, 2013 at 1:30 am


We have had several power outages that have lasted for 3 to 7 days. You would think that people would remember from year to year what they had to do without during the last one and be better prepared with things like canned soups, a portable stove to cook on (butane or something similiar). Plenty of batteries and flash lights, toilet paper, etc. but No.. you see them like zombies driving all over the place after a storm has hit trying to find those basic items that they should have had in stock. We for one have learned our lesson, each time we have had to learn something new (don’t stock your deep freezer in the summer months). I now keep as much frozen water in my deep freezer as I can fit in there so that what I do have doesn’t go bad.. 2012 June 30th we lost power for 6 days with temps in the high 80’s, whew! And unplug your appliances, we lost our refrigerator when the power came back on and caused a surge. Now I know to turn the main circuit breaker off when the power is out. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to have a battery operated radio. Of course these are just a few of the things we do to be prepared my list is longer but on the stupidity front these are some of things that drive me nuts.

susan · July 9, 2013 at 1:42 am

In Florida, people drive to the coast, beach etc during a hurricane to try their hand at surfing or just watching the pounding it is making, driving through feet of water…dangerous..what if they couldn’t get back home? It would be nice to win that package from sta bil!

Lesli · July 9, 2013 at 1:47 am

I don’t worry about storms, but I’m always sensitive to signs of a wildfire that might be nearby.

Roger Weber · July 9, 2013 at 1:54 am

What not to do… In an active tornadozone, you DON’T go storm-watching, you DON’T go to make sure the livestock is in (they’ll wander back eventually, for the most part), and don’t try to race the tornado in order to get away from it (I have both seen and done this; the only reason I succeeded was that I was already in my car on the interstate when it was descending).

Jamie · July 9, 2013 at 1:55 am

SW Idaho gets some brisk straight line winds but I seem to be the only person that brings in my garbage cans for at least a couple of blocks in each direction.
We had a windstorm last spring and it knocked out power all across SW Idaho many rural (tranplanted city) folks had no water for several days without an “electric” pump runing and the city of Twin Falls had NO backup system at all if electricity failed for more than a few hours.
Ironically I had just run my 5 day no water test about 6 weeks prior to the storm and I was very aware of what I needed to do for a water outage. Thank you Kellene for the “no water practice test”!
I now have plenty of drinking water stored, another 300 gallons in rain barrels, 2 big 5 gallon Igloo type jugs for storing hot water overnight as modified hot water tanks along with a portable propane camp shower/small water pump that runs on D cell batteries. I’m slowly adding 15 gallon food safe water barrels for family members and neighbors I can’t convince to prepare ( four are full and two are still in stand by mode). My Mom said I could provide a hot shower or bath or clean drinking water as a trade good if a collapse happens.

I now do a walk through when I see any storm warning in the news and double check all flashlights, fill up all lamps kerosene or oil lamps and make sure the wicks are trimmed, and do any cleaning that requires power like laundry or vacuming. Make sure I’m good on my bread baking and fill all Ice trays or water jugs for freezing to keep the fridge cool and full. Make sure all radios and cell phones have a full charge and rince and soak some beans I can cook on the propane camp stove or solar oven depending on the weather. Make some coffee (store in thermos) and throw some steel cut oats in the crock pot /thermos for breakfast in the AM.

Talk about your peace and no/little stress before a storm. This is it!

Lisa Mullin · July 9, 2013 at 2:12 am

thanks for the laughs!! I am never surprised by human nature, but rather entertained!

Shari Jackson · July 9, 2013 at 2:20 am

Every time there is a good storm or a hurricane in the gulf my husband and his friends go surfing.

Deb · July 9, 2013 at 2:30 am

Before a winter ice storm I have seen folks stock up with frozen TV dinners. I wonder how they thought they would cook them with numerous power outages from fallen trees and limbs.

LeeAnn · July 9, 2013 at 2:36 am

Dumbest thing we did when we went to the basement to shelter from a F5 tornado in 1979 was not notice the 8 year old was barefoot. We survived rebuilt and learned a heck of a lot. We now have a defined safety area pre-equipped with water, lanterns, personal papers and camping gear. We also take with us all medical equipment and medications, bug out bags, cell phones and cash. The items to take down with us are either taken to the basement as soon as the weather turns hinky or staged at the top of the basement stairs so they can be grabbed as we go.

John · July 9, 2013 at 2:37 am

When you know a storm is coming, or if you are caught in a storm. Don’t forget to pray. Prayer can have a powerful effect on the weather. Every aboriginal tribe had some form of rain dance, or some kind of repertoire that induced the placebo effect or the power of the mind. I have prayed my way through many a terrible storm. However, keep in mind that prayer is a direct link to God and not a placebo effect.

Debbie · July 9, 2013 at 2:43 am

About 15 years ago we lived on the Oregon Coast about a block and a half from the beach at beach level. That year we seemed to get more tsunami warnings than normal. We had go bags for everyone (even the beloved guinea pig) and an evacuation and reunite plan for our family. It always amazed me how many people either totally ignored the warning sirens or actually started heading for the beach. They caused quite a traffic hazard for those of us heading for high ground. And earthquake on the West coast causing a Tsunami is highly likely. We soon moved inland and now our biggest natural disaster risks are earthquakes, volcanoes, floods and the occasional ice and wind storm. Would love to win this package from STA-BIL and Start Your Engines!

Diana Smith · July 9, 2013 at 2:46 am

Down here in Mo we have many low water crossings that rarely have running water in them but do flood with alot of rain. Every storm some dumb-squared person is swept away in their car trying to cross one of these places after heavy rain. The lucky ones get rescued. The unlucky drown. Every time flood warnings go up the saying “turn around, don’t drown” is repeated over and over on tv. Remember one old couple that was rescued saying they had to go to a dr. apt so drove thru low water crossing right by their house that they had seen flood dangerously many times.

Donna · July 9, 2013 at 2:50 am

I grew up in a rural area of North Florida. Never ceased to amaze me that no one ever prepared for extended power outages when hurricanes were bearing down on them! Especially those who were on wells and relied on electricity for water. It’s like they didn’t connect the dots!!!

Donna · July 9, 2013 at 2:52 am

And of course there are always those who hold “hurricane parties”! Large quantities of alcohol, hurricanes and… “hey y’all, watch this” are never good things!!

Al · July 9, 2013 at 2:54 am

It amazes me that when there is a snow storm warning, people wait until the last minute to go out to buy shovels and ice melt and then are surprised when they are all sold out. I also don’t understand how people can live in Ohio and not already have a shovel.

Mary Jo Saylor · July 9, 2013 at 3:10 am

I think you were asking for dumb things we have done, so I’m going to ‘fess up.. Early one morning, in Southern California, February 1971. I was awakened by what sounded like a freight train going by my window, and the bed was bouncing as though my husband was jumping on it– the Sylmar earthquake! I got up and ran to check my baby, then ran back to the sliding glass patio door–duh! I am just lucky tat it didn’t shatter in a million pieces and cut me to ribbons! I have learned a lot about earthquake prep since then, but I would still go to check the baby.

    Kellene Bishop · July 9, 2013 at 3:20 am

    Nah, not dumb things you’ve done, but if you want to share, we’ll all smile and still love ya. Hee hee

Vivian · July 9, 2013 at 3:26 am

I think reporters are idiots for standing outside in hurricanes. Do we need to see them there to understand the strength of the storm?

Jessica Sanchez · July 9, 2013 at 3:28 am

Touching or moving downed lines!!!!! I work for an electrical utility and get sent out to assess damage and fix services during storms. I have shown up to sights where lines were reported down across the road, I get there to find a customer or passerby has moved them to the side!!!! It makes me sick when I see that. A power line doesn’t have to be arching or sparking to be live and deadly!!!! Also don’t drive under low lines they can also be hazardous. If lines have fallen on your car stay inside and call for help!! Don’t get out unless you are in imminent danger of death and then jump free of the car so you land away from car with feet together and bunny hop away always keeping your feet together. The difference in voltage between one foot and the other could be enough to kill you.!!!! You will never be hurt if you treat all downed lines as energized and stay away!!!!! Don’t try to be a hero and end up a victim.

Denise in NJ · July 9, 2013 at 3:28 am

While spending a week at the shore, one day there were warnings of severe thunderstorms and a flood watch. People who were parked in a flood zone were moving their cars to higher ground when one young whipper-snapper with a brand new mustang moved his car into the flood zone right in front of the bungalow he was renting. The guy next door told him it was a flood zone and he might want to think about moving it, but he insisted it would be fine, and besides, he FINALLY was able to park in front of the house. A few hours later everyone nearby watched and laughed as he nearly cried when he saw water inside his new car.

Sierra Brown · July 9, 2013 at 3:33 am

I live outside of charming San Antonio, we storm and flood often and everytime there are dozens of high water rescues depite warnings, barricades, closed roads. Yet idiots still put our police and fire men and women at extreme risk. Its so bad, that now people are charged for being rescued. You would think that they would be grateful for being rescued, but no! They complain when the get the bill, most of our rescue workers are volunteer people! Be grateful!

Dianna Thacker · July 9, 2013 at 3:34 am

wow some of those are really funny ( and sad! that people can be so stupid!)
In our area we get the Santa Ana winds out of California, when combined with our monsoons … lightning and thunder you would not believe the number of bad ass folks who run up to the lake for a weekend of water skiing! anyone who lives here KNOWS that Roosevelt lake can be calm as glass then the wind arrives! RUN for shore is what I do I do not want to get caught on the 4 foot white caps, but those loony few beer guzzling tough guys just have to stay ouit there thinking that “nothing will happen to me” until their boat capsizes and they find not even search and rescue will brave that water to drag their dumb ass out until it calms, then when they are able to safely go, they fine the dogsnot out of every one on the boat.

Sierra Brown · July 9, 2013 at 3:38 am

And I agree with the person who complained about people not clearing their yards of stuff when a severe wind storm comes in, I always end up with junk all over my yard, more than once, I hear missiles hitting my windows and sliding glass doors. Please dear neighbors, pick up your lawn tools and gnomes before the storm comes in!

Sharon · July 9, 2013 at 3:39 am

We are preaching to the choir…while we are the ones prepared, others and by that I mean the MAJORITY of our society is not nor ever will. And we the prepared are made fun of by being ready but as soon as “stuff hits the fan”, they turn to us for aid and hand outs. I have wonderful friends and neighbors during sickness, deaths, etc and I will do my best to care for them in the weather scenarios, but honestly if it comes down to putting food in my mouth or theirs….

Carrie · July 9, 2013 at 3:48 am

I’ve known more than one husband (mine included) who in the middle of a big snow storm wants to go out in it and take a drive to the store, etc. just to see how bad it is. When the wives complain about how crazy that is and refuse to go with them, the husband always comments, “but, (Alice, Mary, Peggy, etc.), it’s only weather!” More than one friend’s husband has then taken off in the car, truck, etc. to see the storm for himself. Those I’ve known have gotten home safely but they heard a lot of comments from their wives!

Jo · July 9, 2013 at 3:54 am

We have an ample water supply so I keep gallons in my garage. My neighbor laughs at me and I tell him it’s for an emergency. “Well,” he says, “if I need something in an emergency, I’ll just come over to your house.” Hmmm. I wish he would be prepared so we could SHARE resources and not just drain mine!

Dotty · July 9, 2013 at 3:58 am

About 30 years ago, we had a tornado circle our house, I had the kids in the hallway under a mattress, However I am standing on the porch, holding on to the post in total AWE of this tornado laying trees down like dominos. I should have been scared out of my pants and under the mattress with the kids,yet I was so enthralled by this force of nature, I couldn’t be scared. I have great respect for storms, and if I had been born in a different place and time I might just be a storm chaser.

Michael · July 9, 2013 at 3:59 am

I used to live in an extremely cold place pron to flooding and ice. You could alway count on a car, truck, or RV half sunk in the river where someone decided to drive out on the ice. Then spring comes and with it floods, the worse it is the more people flock to the river areas to see how bad it is and get washed away or sucked into rapidly moving water and drowned or nearly do so. Stay home and watch it on tv, the dumb news crews will all be out being stupid for you!

Lani · July 9, 2013 at 4:04 am

Everyone is running out to the grocery at the last minute instead of being always prepared. Causing accidents and stressful situations.

jean · July 9, 2013 at 4:05 am

My pet peeve is when there are the flash flood warnings and people still drive on water covered roads. Last big rain storm, I watched a driver drive into the water, and then started cursing when the water rose over the tires, stalled the car and carried him off the road. Did he forget that he is the one who drove into it? The rest of us just waited 15 minutes and drove on when the road cleared.

Lani · July 9, 2013 at 4:06 am

I am a prepper but I don’t let anyone know. Wish we had a neighborhood group, but who knows who to trust. No one around me seems to even be aware that there may be a true crisis around the corner.

    Sam · July 27, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    I’m in the same spot Lani.

Lynn · July 9, 2013 at 4:07 am

You may have seen on the news what disaster our city and surrounding areas have been suffering through this past month. It’s been the worst natural disaster in the history of our city! And I might add….in my life time. Scary! Crazy! Never thought it would happen here in our city. {But of course, to our neighbors’ surprise…we were prepared for one anyway. ; ) } Lot’s of major flood relief and clean up going on every day now. {Thank goodness}. It’s been amazing the amount of community efforts going on to help those who lost everything. I wish I could be of more service…….but I just went through a personal emergency of my own. I was hit by a truck while out riding my bike. He wasn’t looking where he was going. I have been in a wheelchair for two months. I am on a long road back to recovery and I am learning how to walk all over again. Very frustrating…….but SO grateful for my life. Oh…..everyone take note…..”Wear a helmet!! They save lives and your head.” *grin*

Anyway…back to the crazy things people do during a severe storm warning…

Our Mayor has said it best. He is AWESOME! Here’s his famous 2013 quote, said during our flood:

“I can’t believe I actually have to say this, but I’m going to say it: The river is CLOSED. You cannot boat on the river. I have a large number of nouns that I could use to describe the people I saw in a canoe on the Bow River today……..I am not allowed to use any of them. I *can* tell you, however, that I have been told that despite the state of local emergency, I’m not allowed to invoke the Darwin Law.” -Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi-

Treva · July 9, 2013 at 4:13 am

Folks gather at one location for safety in a storm, then behave as though it is a neighborhood party in the house with only little ones who can’t walk, in the safe area. “get in the safe room and listen for weather updates”. Now if they had the kit at the least they would be able to put bandaids on the cuts they get from flying debris!

Carla · July 9, 2013 at 4:14 am

Having lived in Oklahoma all my life and dealing with tornadoes, you quickly learn what to do, and not do. A tornado can be heading right for you, and then quickly turn left or right. No one wants to spend hours sitting in a musty cellar, so… we sit on the porch and watch. In 2009 a tornado was reported on the ground and heading my way. I ran to the school and picked up my son and we made it home minutes before the storm. We headed for the cellar, but it was flooded. Not enough time to run to the neighbors, so we went back in the house into an interior closet. This storm left our house standing, our greenhouse standing, but wiped out our barn and several small outbuildings.
Since then tornadoes in Oklahoma have gotten larger and much more deadly. Next time I’ll allow more time to get my son and allow us plenty of time to find alternate shelter in the event our cellar was flooded again.

Kathy T · July 9, 2013 at 4:33 am

We live in a mountain town and each year there are avalanches caused by those who just HAVE to ski the back country even when the avalanche danger is high. Transponders don’t guarantee that you will be found in time and the Search and Rescue Volunteers risk their lives each time they are called out.

Roger Weber · July 9, 2013 at 4:44 am

For a hurricane, the answer is blisteringly obvious: Don’t be there. I remember FEMA telling people who were determined to stay through Katrina to write their social security numbers on their arm in Sharpie, so they could identify the bodies.

Melinda McCulley · July 9, 2013 at 5:21 am

When we were on our honeymoon some 20 years ago I could not pry my husband out of Florida when they told us to evacuate because a hurricane was coming. We live in the Midwest and he was out filming on the beach. Some years later he was in the middle of a tornado not far from home on the highway and not only did a large piece of metal roofing wrap around his truck but a tree was coming straight for his windshield when thankfully God lifted it up. This made a believer out of him and now he is the first to call me and the elderly relatives when a bad storm is approaching. He is also prepper ready!

Debbra Walter · July 9, 2013 at 6:29 am

The only storm that occurs in the mountain area where I live is the tourist kind. Every year people get trapped by the flash floods, the mud slides, hurt by going head first over the waterfall, and burned by the forest fires. Tourists try to cross the flash flood control gully aptly named Rattlesnake Creek. Flash floods are called “flash” because they strike without warning. Mudslide signs are all over the roads leading to town, in town and on the hiking trails. The waterfalls have signs posted that say climbing is too hazardous. People have been swept down the streets or trails by mudslides. Fires, thank heaven, haven’t come at us from the west or that would seal us all in. Our town is a high canyon with one entrance and that for an exit as well. I can just see the tourists trying to get us to save them while they block the exit with their panic and their cars, while we are also running for our lives. A great prepper shares and folds in the needy. So we will do our best.

Ginger M · July 9, 2013 at 6:35 am

A dear friend just HAD to leave his nice warm house and his two little girls (alone!) during the Halloween storm in Duluth MN in the early nineties. The car was buried in the snowdrift, he didn’t have skis or snowshoes, and his neighbors were buried in as well. What could he not live without? Cigarettes!
The nearest bodega was over a mile away as the crow could fly, but he had over two miles to hike because of his neighborhood’s odd layout. To his credit, after he had slogged to the end of the second block, he realized he had been outside for almost an hour, so he turned around and slogged back, minus any butts but his own.

Ginger M · July 9, 2013 at 6:50 am

Again, a story of my dear friend in Duluth. In this story, he was living just outside of Superior, Wisconsin, with his two little girls. He is busy being a dutiful dad, getting the girls ready for school, and neglects to hear the sirens blaring outside. One of the little girls asks him about it as they are getting into the car and he thinks its a test of the system and not to worry about it.
He realizes that there isn’t too much traffic that morning and its kind of foggy on the road. He drives into the fogbank which goes on for several minutes and he and the girls smell an awful odor. The girls are covering their faces and begin to cry. He is coughing and his eyes are watering when he drives out of the fogbank and sees police and fire department vehicles, hazardous waste spill trucks and ambulances parked on the sides of the road with all of their lights flashing. He is flagged down and the car is rushed upon by EMTs who drag all of them out to wash them down and take them to the hospital because he has just driven them through a benzene spill caused by a tanker car derailment which had occurred at 5 oclock in the morning, and had he let the girls turn on the TV that morning or bothered to turn on a radio, even when he heard the sirens, they would have been spared serious illness and injury.
Two stories about the same fool is enough – you can’t fix stupid.

    Kellene Bishop · July 9, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    sounds like this friend of yours has given you plenty of fodder for what NOT to do!! 🙂

Don H · July 9, 2013 at 9:19 am

I see swift water rescue teams having to rescue people who are out on the flood swollen river. These dense folks are in for a joy ride in everything from pool floats to kayaks and canoes. Some may know how to handle raging flood water and have the experience, but those in pool floats, inexpensive 1 chamber rafts and inner tubes should be charged for the rescues that are made for them. In our area during the recent 4th of July rains, we have had several flood water deaths due to joy riders on the river exercising their rights in a self glory manner.

Goatlover · July 9, 2013 at 10:36 am

We experienced 2 hurricanes back-to-back in 2004. Our community worked together during and after the storm to help out those in need. But, so many of the needs were easily preventable!! Being a mechanic, my boyfriend donated his time to those with generator problems……MOST of the issues were the result of leaving fuel in the generators for long periods of time. It gummed up the engines really bad! Proper care of a generator will provide you with much-needed power instead of an over-sized doorstop.

KATHY BROWN · July 9, 2013 at 10:45 am

After a big snow, my hubby went out on the balcony to get the snow off the satellite dish then proceeded to lock himself out of the house with only shorts on and no one home. As he trudged his way to our connecting metal roofed garage unbeknownst to him he had deeply cut his leg on a metal gutter guard hiding in the snow which he didn’t even feel because his legs were so cold. He crawled/slid his way up and over the roof of the garage and when I got home had to take him to the E.R. for 10 stitches. P.S. The doctor said we were the 2nd patient that day who also got injured removing snow from their satellite dish!

KATHY BROWN · July 9, 2013 at 10:47 am

During the Leap Day Tornado in Southern Illinois, the 3 kids and I raced to the basement when we noticed I had accidentally left my husband upstairs in bed. I’m still paying for that one!

Jeannette Olton · July 9, 2013 at 11:05 am

It still amazes me that every time there is a flooding rain someone drives into an obviously flooded underpass (known to flood easily) and then needs to be rescued. No matter how many times it is announced “Don’t drive into water across a roadway because you can’t tell how deep it is”, someone always does.

Floyde Adams · July 9, 2013 at 11:11 am

Where we live in SW New Mexico, we don’t have tornadoes, hurricanes, flooding rivers, deep winter snow, frozen lakes, etc. What we do have are forest fires. Strange as it seems, folks refuse to thin the trees and undergrowth on their property when doing so greatly diminishes the chance of losing their home.

Yolanda · July 9, 2013 at 11:32 am

People often don’t seem to know/realize that if you can HEAR thunder, then you need to take cover. I have a friend who was sitting on her porch one afternoon, listening to the thunder and enjoying the “distant” lightning show. Suddenly, lightning hit a tree in her yard maybe 20 feet from her. Rather startling, to say the least. Thank you for hosting this giveaway!

Lisa S · July 9, 2013 at 11:34 am

People can be so stupid during storms. Having to go outside in the middle of a hurricane to see “how bad it is” or going across the river in the middle of an awful thunderstorm with lightning all over the place and a waterspout or two along the way. My ex husbands favorite thing to do when a hurricane was on its way was to head for the beach to go surfing.
My mom taught me to be prepared. We always had loads of fried chicken, biscuits and vienna sausages and crackers (lol). Ice chests full of ice to put it in. Lots of candles, flashlights and water in every available container, including bathtubs and sinks.

Yolanda · July 9, 2013 at 11:35 am

My second example… A friend who goes grocery shopping Every Single Day. She has a husband and some little children. She never knows, ahead of time, what she will prepare for her family for dinner. I have never understood it. What if she gets sick? What if there is bad weather and she can’t get to the store? What if there is a REAL disaster and they have NOTHING?? Ahhhh!!!!!!!!

Yolanda · July 9, 2013 at 11:41 am

OK… #3 comment. This was us, years ago. We lived in Nebraska. We had two tiny children and another one on the way. As far as preparedness, this is probably the dumbest thing we ever did. One evening we went grocery shopping… all of us. On the way home, there was a severe blizzard. We were inching along alright (sort of) until we had to turn and go parallel to the wind. Then we lost all visibility. The snow was coming down very fast, and it was dark outside. We had to stop the car. We had NOTHING in the car to help us. No blankets, NOTHING. After sitting there for a while, a local farmer, who lived very close by, came up behind us, stopped to help and we managed to follow him to his house where we stayed for 3 days. My husband was a hog farmer, and was able to walk to the farm to take care of his animals the next day. It wasn’t easy. I shudder to think what could have happened to us if our angel had not come along. Ever since, I make sure I have a “kit” in my car. For that matter, it doesn’t have to be a blizzard. Anything could happen and it could be impossible to get home where I have my food and water storage, candles, blankets, firewood, etc. It is essential to be prepared at all times.

Karyn · July 9, 2013 at 11:43 am

Thunderstorms have been rumbling thru the area and dumping a bunch of rain….filling up gutters that have not been cleared out. So during a break in the rain but certainly not the thunder, out comes the aluminum ladder to clear out the aluminum gutters. Fortunately, a caring neighbor reminded me what I was doing and that when there’s thunder there is lightening. I had never jumped off a ladder before that incident. Yes, it was ME being that dumb! I still have my wits and alot more of them now too.

Heidi S · July 9, 2013 at 11:44 am

I love, love, love to just shake my head every time I watch a natural disaster on the news. My favorite is the guy that refused to leave his beloved mountain that was about to volcano all up in his business. Not sure if they ever found him.
First of all, do the news reporters really feel they need to be right smack in the middle of said disaster. Yes I laugh when they get knocked over. Second all the college kids that are filmed by said reporter, running around half naked, hootin’ and hollerin’ about how awesome the surfing is, as a huge tree branch comes flying past and scares them…then they start laughing again. Thirdly the aftermath of it all when everyone comes out and runs to the only atm with power then goes to the pub or finds the weary reporter to whine about how they don’t have power 2 hours after the storm passed.
Yes I was once one of these. My very first hurricane, we lived in an old apartment on the top floor with huge old oak trees all around. We waited until the storm past and were out acting crazy with the college kids. Stupid me didn’t realize this was the eye of the storm, and was caught about 2 miles from me place. We didn’t know anyone except co-workers at the time. We were very poor and young, had no supplies except the lighter, some candles, and a flashlight. We did have some canned/dry food but no way to cook it. Our tore up old car had less than 1/2 a tank of gas and there was a huge long line at the one gas station that had power and an atm. They had bumped up the price of gas by a good 20 cents from the day before. We ended up making it to the inlaws and stayed for a week. The only way we knew we had power was that the answering machine picked up.
Once we were in our first home I made a “kit” and we still use that today.

KC · July 9, 2013 at 11:58 am

During a midwestern tornado outbreak, I was posting a list on Facebook of the things we have in our tornado shelter, trying to help out some friends who are new to the area. One long-time resident replied that her basement/shelter is so full of clutter, there isn’t even room to stand, so her method of “preparing” is to pray nothing happens! Eventually, my list of preparedness items inspired her kids to gather a few essentials — “2 blankets, 2 water bottles, 2 flashlights, and “since we will be confined in a small space with mr farts-a-lot, a can of febreze air freshener!” “

Linda Lallerstedt · July 9, 2013 at 12:34 pm

Don’t forget to rent some movies you can watch when the power goes out!!

    jerry · July 9, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    I guess Linda has a generator to use to watch those movies that she went out to get before the power went out.LOL

      Patty · December 16, 2013 at 7:08 am

      Jerry, I was thinking the
      Jerry, I was thinking the same thing!!

Barbara · July 9, 2013 at 12:39 pm

My Husband works for a very large warehousing facility. His particular account is for one of the big paper products company. While there was almost a full week of news coverage and predictions of last years hurricane Sandy making land fall in the Northeast it amazingly went for the most part unheeded by most. At first warning I sent my adult daughter with all the extra cash I could muster and rolled change to get the specialized baby formula her daughter used. She considers her prepper mom &dad crazy! It was the only thing I was unable to store up ahead because of cost and constant changes to find something she could tolerate. She had to go to three stores to find 4 cans of powder mix! Meantime we secured enough wood inside to run both cookstove and wood heat stove, secured the out buildings and contents and moved anything valueable out of the shed along the creek(our property is borderd by two creeks! ). We were ready! My husband chose to go to work although he drove the 4 wheel drive lifted truck(gas hog) and knows at least 6 alternative routes for the 45 mile drive. He was stunned and angry when he had a truck driver come in and tell him at the last moments before the storm where he just came from. For the record this guy lives up near us in the country 45 miles from the city the warehous is in. He was called out at the last minute to make an emergency run to eastern New Jersey, Not with bottled water,batteries or emergency supplies but an eighteen wheeler full of TWINKIES. No kidding there seemed to a shortage that was causing a twinkie emergency. This guy had to risk being caught in a storm so they would not run out of twinkies!


Scott W · July 9, 2013 at 1:03 pm

I live in Coastal NC, Hurricanes are part of our life each year, even if we are not a direct hit. I know this sounds small but one suggestion I have learned from experience is, “Cut Your Grass” before the storm. Why? If you have ever had to drag tree limbs thru tall grass once you will understand. Also not only that, with tall grass and high humidity comes the hungry mosquito. Mosquito like tall grass.

Before hand freeze some bottles or milk jugs for ice blocks. We had our power out for 2 weeks one time and it was nice to have a couple of coolers with ice.

Propane tanks for your grill. Life saver.

Everything else is pick up stuff that might blow away, batten down the hatches and stay sober just in case.

Sharon · July 9, 2013 at 1:07 pm

My husband has worked for major insurance company for 30 years so we have heard and seen more than anyone should and for this reason, we became preppers. Check with your company before weather conditions are brewing and see what is covered and what is not, video your home and contents it and if you do not have video capability, write it down in spiral notebook, and get your medications stored. Keep these in your safe place along with stored can goods, extra cash, and milk! 🙂

James Garrison · July 9, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Unbelivable moment came when my Dads basement flooded . I asked him where the gas powered sump pump was in the basement!!!!! on a shelf under water !!!! but the best part came when he said lets just plug in the electric pump and wait awhile. in 4 feet of water he wants to play with a electric pump . No Thank You . Love my Dad but he has his moments !!!!

Kristin · July 9, 2013 at 1:49 pm

Luckily I don’t live in an area prone to natural disasters. Around here people panic before a major snow storm though. I blame the forecasters for making almost every snowfall sound like it’s the next storm of the century. It’s common knowledge that you should avoid the grocery store before a snowfall because everyone is there stocking up on bread and milk. I find it much more rational to keep a supply of flour, water, yeast, and powdered milk (among other things) on hand so that I don’t need to run to the store. Wish someone could get through to those people standing in line at the grocery store before the inclement weather–if you live in an are where you might get snowed-in, wouldn’t it be less stressful to just be prepared?

Kristin · July 9, 2013 at 1:57 pm

My husband has gone out in a blizzard TWICE for ice cream in the 10 years we’ve been married. In this house it is a CRISIS when we run low on ice cream. Unfortunately, my husband is less afraid of my wrath than he is of running out of his favorite flavor.

Cheryl O. · July 9, 2013 at 2:08 pm

Just before the Y2K scenario, some people I know went out and bought a team of draft horses, a wagon, and harnesses so they could “bug out” if needed. No idea HOW to hitch and drive a team let alone feed and care fore them. Horses DID eventually go to a good home. Sheesh!!

Renee F. · July 9, 2013 at 2:15 pm

I have lived in Florida my entire life. We have always been prepared for storms. I remember when i was little we already had the preparations we needed (food, water, gas, cash….everything on the lists) but my Mom would save even more water. She would get out all the tupperware, pitchers and anything that would hold water and fill them up. She would also fill up the tubs with water (for flushing toilets and washing dishes and we would use the shower until the storm passed. Then after the store went through if everything was fine and dandy she would water the plants with the water from the containers for the next three weeks. We would use a bucket to flush the toilets with from the tubs to conserve the water, even though we still had water and electricity. To this day I still do everything at my own home exactly how she did it. We store food, water and other items year round. When a hurricane is on the water we start filling the tubs and checking our supplies again and again. We are NEVER those people that have to RUN to the stores in ANY situation.
We never tell anyone that we are prepared because we do not want them knocking on our door or gunning it down.
A few of our neighbors are under the impression that the government will step in and save them. I have tried to talk to them before but they put that wall up.

The Concrete Fairy · July 9, 2013 at 2:21 pm

You beat me 🙂 I was thinking up how to word a comment about all the 4 wheel drive trucks I see stuck after every snowstorm, because “It’s 4 wheel drive! That means it does anything, right!?” Cracks me up every time it snow storms and I see them all over the sides of the road, waiting to be towed.

Pam Shroyer · July 9, 2013 at 2:36 pm

I live on the East coast and I am always amazed/horrified at all the people who go to the shore to watch the waves (and some even surf) and flooding during a hurricane!

Cathy W. · July 9, 2013 at 2:57 pm

I like the fools who when a Tornado is coming go out to look at it! Some of the videos on youtube bear witness to that..just plain stupid!

Annie · July 9, 2013 at 3:03 pm

I always wonder what people in the south are thinking when they are out walking in fast moving flood waters going down storm drains that they could be sucked into or getting bit by all the poisonous snakes that have gotten washed out.

Annie · July 9, 2013 at 3:07 pm

Instead of people leaving home early, to escape the storm when it is coming straight toward then, they leave as it is arriving and get stuck on the highway in bumper to bumper traffic and run out of gas.

Annie · July 9, 2013 at 3:12 pm

The police not moving prisoners from their jail to a jail out of town, before Katrina hit and then letting them out on the streets to wreak havic on the citizens and property left in the city. Like that wasn’t going to happen.

stacy overacker-Bailey · July 9, 2013 at 3:47 pm

😉 gotta have em LOL

Shelley · July 9, 2013 at 4:11 pm

We have had a power outage, an Ecoli contamination in our city water supply, and some severe Thunderstorm warnings, all within the past 2 weeks. Definitely has me thinking. Want to be prepared for whatever comes my way. Thanks for the post.

Dorothy · July 9, 2013 at 4:23 pm

I hope this is where to post for contest..Dumb things….My mother wears hearing aids, can not hear without them. She also is an insulin user. She has a weather radio, I bought it for her, she has it set for only our county, so has no idea of what may be coming at us from the county near us. She knows when storms are going to hit us at night, I call her to make sure she knows. She will head off to bed, take out her hearing aids, only thing that wakes her is the lightening. By that time it is often way too late for her to get in a car and drive just the few hundred feet to our basement to hide. If she does make it here in time, she never has her insulin with her. Most of the time she ends up hiding in her bathroom..Now mind you, that would be okay, if she didn’t live in a dang Mobil Home…grrrrrrrr

Faith Shingleton · July 9, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Lisbon, Ohio had some heavy rains and flooding. My friends husband decided to go out to see how bad the flooding was, and took two of his children with. The creek was flowing over the bridge but he decided to “test the waters”. The water slammed his car against the railing. They were stuck. He had to call fire and rescue to pull his car out of the water. Unfortunately for them, the car wouldn’t start up so they had to walk the four miles home in the pouring down rain.

Arlene B · July 9, 2013 at 4:40 pm

I was in CA during the Northridge earthquake. A friend of mine said she didn’t have ANY batteries for their flashlights so they were fumbling around in the dark trying to find working batteries in their kid’s toys. Stupid! They had lots of money for other things but not basic preparedness.

Lisa Hall · July 9, 2013 at 5:09 pm

This month in Floresville, TX. We were on our way back from NM visiting one of the kids and a severe thunderstorm hit the area. My mother who is 71 was home alone when the lights went out for 11 hours. She was able to crank-charge her cell phone and with the battery backup for her chair and the stored food and water she was fine until we got home. We have a go-to walk-in closet for her with all the essentials needed in an emergency. So for everyone who makes fun of us, how prepared were you?

Aimee · July 9, 2013 at 5:36 pm

I am always shocked that there are crazy people who will go outside and film a tornado! Yeah, it’s cool to see, but is it worth your life? The debris flying around, lightning, etc – there isn’t enough money in the world to get me outside during a severe storm, or the warnings that come before the storm!!

Kellene Bishop · July 9, 2013 at 5:37 pm

This one made my laugh out loud!

Tami · July 9, 2013 at 5:56 pm

I live in a coastal area and certain areas are prone to both ponding and tidal flooding during thunderstorms/tropical storms. But every time, there are pictures and video of cars sitting in the water where the people didn’t move their cars. If you live there and know it floods, why not move your car ahead of the storm? Then there are those who try to drive through the ponding and get stuck only to have to be rescued.

Kellene Bishop · July 9, 2013 at 6:04 pm

I’d’ love to hear more about the “feet together and bunny hop” reasoning, Jess. You know your stuff, I have no doubt. I haven’t learned that before and I’m such a “why” person. Please educate me. 🙂

Phyliss · July 9, 2013 at 6:04 pm

We drove with my Mom and Dad to family a few hours away in their large mini van for Christmas. It was snowing but light enough and we wanted to enjoy the holiday. As we were driving it got heavier. My Dad was driving too fast and showing off and kept skidding and the more I would ask him to slow down the faster he would go. The storm turned out much worse than predicted. Everyone wanted us to stay and camp out for the night to be safe. My Dad wanted to get home for his animals and he decided to leave right after dinner. It was either drive with him or be stranded so off we all went into the storm. There were practically no cars to be had on the road and the snow cover was getting brutal. It got to a point were you could not see out the window but he refused to pull over no matter how slow or difficult the road was. My X ( whom I have remained close with over the years) opened his window in the front passenger seat. He sat on the window with his body outside and kept clearing the wipers and he directed my dad where to drive so he could see. He was dads eyes and the only reason we are alive today. At one point my dad skid out onto the side of the road and a truck went by honking its horn. It missed us by much less than a cars length. I spent the trip in the way back holding my daughter and the two of us praying and singing chants with mom in the row in front of us. It took over 12 hours to get home and home never looked so good. I never let my dad drive me again. We later learned that a snow emergency had been declared and no cars were supposed to be on the road. It was a blizzard that left 3 feet of snow. I would never let someone take that chance with my life again, hard lesson learned. We can laugh about it now but it was as crazy as crazy gets.

tricia · July 9, 2013 at 6:27 pm

I’ve been to the Jersey shore numerous times when there’s been a hurricane nearby. I can’t believe the people that think standing on the rocks/jetties to view the surf is a good idea. Can you day ‘duh’?

Deborah · July 9, 2013 at 6:30 pm

I have an aunt I have tried to get started prepping. She showed me her pantry and said she had at least 6 months of food inside it plus she had some food in the freezer. I told her unless they only ate one tiny meal every odd day of the week they didn’t have enough and if the power went out all the foods in the fridge and freezer would ruin. So she told me then that if they ran out God would be there to help. I reminded her God helps those that help themselves. I really don’t think she ever got it.

Donna Little · July 9, 2013 at 6:49 pm

I live in Texas on the gulf coast & a hurricane (cat. 3) is heading my way. I am prepared with all my supplies but at the last minute decide to evacuate leaving the supplies behind with no bug out bag & water in the vehicle.

Jeff · July 9, 2013 at 6:51 pm

When I was in the Marines and staioned in Okinawa we would have typhoons.
Marines would get their beer and go down and sit on the sea wall and get drunk while watching the heavy oceans, wind , and rain come in from the storm.

Donna Little · July 9, 2013 at 6:58 pm

You buy a generator & you don’t read the instructions. Then a storm comes, the power goes out & you decide to run the generator in the garage with the doors closed not knowing the fumes would fill the house & kill you!

Barbara · July 9, 2013 at 7:25 pm

I have tried several ways to encourage my sisters to make at least minimal preparation for an emergency. I have been called “paranoid” more than once. When I showed my sisters a catalog of various freeze dried food the comment was “that’s too expensive”. I guess that starving is less expensive. One sister showed me her “emergency pantry” which consisted of a few cans of soup and a box of instant rice and some noodles. After spending 5 days without electricity this past winter due to heavy snow, I tried to tell them how important it was for us to be prepared for at least a week on our own. They live further North than I do, but they just don’t seem to understand the urgency. We were saved because of canned meat, containers full of drinking water, 1 gallon jugs of water for toilets (it takes 3 gallons to flush one toilet) and I baked two loaves of bread the night before the storm and located candles and flashlights “just in case”. They think we were just “lucky”.

Andrea · July 9, 2013 at 7:52 pm

I’m in Colorado where there are a lot of wildfires. There are so many people who have lost their homes in the fires-lost homes number near 1,000! I have read several stories of people who lost everything. People don’t even know what to grab when they are evacuating.

Joyce Topping · July 9, 2013 at 7:58 pm

I always have snacks, water, and blankets along with other emergency things packed in our vehicles. One summer we were coming back from Ohio and we got stuck on a 2 lane highway in the desert for 6 hours due to an accident that ended up being fatal and had caused a fire. Lucky for us we had the emergency food and water with us. We couldn’t have got off that highway and turned around for anything, we were just stuck. Now my husband doesn’t laugh at me when I stock up and prepare for things like this. He was pretty darn happy to have something to eat and drink with us. People need to realize that they should be prepared for anything that happens. It’s better to be prepared and not need it than to need it and not have it.

Gin · July 9, 2013 at 8:36 pm

Check your homeowner’s insurance; call your agent way before you ever see “storm clouds” …you’ll be surprised what is and what isn’t covered and hopefully will be able to mitigate serious loss ahead of time.

Vickie Cornell · July 9, 2013 at 9:13 pm

I live in Oklahoma and this spring has been deadly with several tornados that were mega-monsters. The lack of preparedness has been underscored by the high number of deaths in all areas. One of the saddest and most preventable was the instance in which a family took refuge in a street culvert located behind their house that was a known to carry large amounts of water during heavy rains. The storm did have circulation in it but the main warning was for heavy rainfall. The parents each had two children in their arms; however, the rushing water tore three of the children away from them with the final result being the death of two of the small children. This could all have been prevented with just a plan for taking shelter in a safe area. In Oklahoma we have one television station whose weatherman is excellent at warning people in advance about these storms; however, as I have always said, “You can’t help stupid”!!!

Kathleen B. · July 9, 2013 at 9:42 pm

We live in NJ and were preparing for hurricane sandy last fall. I got all the lanterns, batteries and candles out. I made sure that there was extra water for drinking, the animals and for the toilets. We had plenty of shelf stable food and I have a gas stove, so I knew that I could at least heat up water to cook. I went to my parents house, 5 miles away to make sure they were ok. My mom assured me that there would be fine. I asked her if she had fully charged her cell phone.
She told that it was fine because she never uses it – so how could the battery be low. So of course we lost power and so did they. My dad called me the next day and told me that if I needed them to call his cell because my mom’s cell had a dead battery! All in all, we were lucky but we were without power for a week.

Starr · July 9, 2013 at 9:44 pm

One of the dumbest things people do is to leave their current location when they find a out a severe storm is imminent. I cannot tell you how many times, a guest has suddenly realized they absolutely must leave to take care of something that is not more important than preserving their life. This also involves the persons who came with them. They are being forced into the dangerous situation as well. Even if you are willing to take that risk for yourself, why would you being willing to subject a friend, relative, child to that risk as well? It happens. We hear on the news of a severe thunder storm coming, of tornado warnings, lightening, fog or at the cold end ice storm, snow storm warnings. It is all the same. The guest must leave to get home. Why in the name of everything holy would you leave a good, well stocked shelter to get in your car and drive home? It drives me nuts.

Catherine · July 9, 2013 at 10:16 pm

Living in Oregon, we don’t have the really big emergencies that other areas experience. However, during any “snowstorm” of at least an inch of snow, the city shuts down and people leave work in a panic. Naturally, they get stuck on the freeways because someone will hit their brakes too hard and spin out. Within a few minutes freeways are parking lots and people just walk away from their cars. (A major windfall for the tow truck companies, since they charge a fortune to release your car!)

My coworkers would all walk two doors down to the pub, have some tasty food and wait for a few hours. After 3 hours, the abandoned cars would all be gone, the freeways sanded, and no traffic on the drive home. Panic is truly the enemy.

Terry · July 9, 2013 at 10:24 pm

Having lived thru the blizzard of “78, numerous power outages,severe storms,tornado’s and flooding (as a first responder),I only have a few things to say…..PAY ATTENTION………To the weather forcasters,and local emergency authorities.These highly trained and dedicated people provide valuable info BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER an event has taken place.THINK…… About your personal preparedness plan for events in your area and pratice putting you plan in place with your family and share it with your friends and neighbors.PREPAREDNESS IS NOT PANC, IT IS COMFORT DURING DIFFICULT SITUATIONS.

Erin S · July 9, 2013 at 10:43 pm

We have a lot of wildfires here in AZ too. It amazes me that people won’t evacuate and then pay the ultimate price or have to be rescued, taking away responders who have better things to be doing during the emergency.

Mel · July 9, 2013 at 11:00 pm

After the recent wildfires here, I heard someone talking about watching the reports on TV for sometime before they decided to try to get in to get important things from a relative’s house. Evacuation areas change VERY quickly in a fire. Act as soon as you find out there is an issue. Don’t wait. People here were running police barricades and doing other sorts of things to get back into houses.

Starr · July 9, 2013 at 11:01 pm

Another dumb thing I have seen would be in the ‘lack of preparedness’ category. We live in the Ozarks and are 17 miles from the nearest town. This area is not heavily populated, but we have new families moving here on a fairly steady basis. Not having amenities close at hand, most of us are fairly self sufficient. We know how to “get things done” and what it takes to do so. Our winters can range from mild (not a lot of snow) to severe (lots of snow and ice). Our area is hilly and can be quite steep in places, so most folks have some kind of 4WD vehicle to depend on. Part of our regular winter preps are: trickle chargers, diesel supplement, gasoline supplement, a change of oil, etc, for the trucks and tractors. Also, water heaters, blankets, cover, and wind breaks for the livestock. For ourselves; wood, small propane canisters (to power cook stoves and room size heaters), canned foods (both store bought and home made), candles, solar lighting, lots of quilts, cold weather clothing (layers are best). That is just for starters. You need to be able to take care of yourself and loved ones if the power goes out, or if the conditions are more severe than usual. Even if you move here from a warmer climate, you would know to make winter preparations to and for your equipment, trucks, tractors, and livestock. Right? …. Right??? Well, maybe not. It is surprising to me the people who do not take into consideration that it is risky for folks to come out and rescue them if they are not able to take care of themselves or their stock. The majority of our roads are dirt. It might take a couple of days (or more) to get the roads cleared. Especially if conditions are more severe than normal. They cannot get hay to their livestock, if their tractor won’t start. They cannot heat even a small room if they did not have the foresight to get a camping heater and propane tanks for it. They will eat cold yucky food if they do not have a way to heat it. So what do they do if they are not prepared? They call someone for help. Most folks are glad to help others. But, why should anyone have to endanger themselves to rescue someone who was foolish? Sometimes a lack of preparations is just foolish.

Mel · July 9, 2013 at 11:22 pm

Don’t wait until the last minute to evacuate from a wildfire. The people who were killed in the most recent one near here, apparently had the car packed, checked on the neighbors, made a phone call and said they could see the glow from the fire, and had been told to leave by police but didn’t for some reason.

Mel · July 9, 2013 at 11:49 pm

I noticed during the wildfires last year, that I don’t function as well if I am under stress, even if I’m not immediately in danger or really impacted. Just deciding what to make for dinner was a challenge. There was plenty of food, but what to make. Now I have a set easy emergency meals (pasta) to make so we can carry on normally and so I can make sure the kids aren’t stressed. Don’t try to go out to eat if a lot of people are evacuated nearby, the restaurants will be jam packed and possibly understaffed to boot. This year’s fires were closer but not to the point that we were really worried. In retrospect we did a decent job evacuating, getting the most important things that insurance can’t replace, making a video of our possessions for insurance purposes, and doing it without worrying our kids. We’re working on a checklist for next time in case it is necessary to do it in only 5-10 minutes.

RuthWW · July 10, 2013 at 12:13 am

In 1997, huge storm hit the Sierra’s right after Christmas. 3feet of snow one weekend, then the next weekend another 3 feet of Sierra Cement. One day after a good snowfall, I took the 4×4 Suburban out to Reno and once I got to the freeway, it was smooth sailing. When I returned home to Truckee, my husband took the same vehicle and went down the block in the opposite direction I had gone. One block away the snow on the road had blown into 3-5 feet drifts. The Suburban got stuck on a downhill slope. He walked back home and got out the old Dodge 4×4 truck to pull the Suburban out of the snow. That got stuck, too. By then other cars came behind those vehicles and all got stuck. My children and I trudged thru the snow bringing shovels to help dig them all out……but hardly making a dent out of the mess. Finally a snow plow came up the hill from below digging out the hillside and one by one getting all the vehicles unstuck. Some people think 4×4’s can go anywhere they please……but not so!

lizzy · July 10, 2013 at 12:47 am

im terrified of storms so i have my basement set up with couches and heavy furniture to crawl under…about 6 or 7 yrs ago it was a hot sunny 90 degree day in the greater detroit area…i had gone to my sister in laws which was 12 mins away and taken my youngest daughter with me and left my middle child home and the older child was off with friends…i wasn’t at my sister in laws for more then 5 mins and my daughter calls and says MOM THE SIRENS ARE GOING OFF….i laughed and said ok rae….she calls right back and said LISTEN….i heard them going off and thought WOW there’s no way….so i left and started driving back home and as i turned on the road going towards my house i hear the sirens and the sky was so black all i could was cry….i made it home just in time for the call from my sister in law telling me to get in the basement a tornado had touched down on one of the beach areas…my daughter already had everything set up downstairs so all we had to do was get under the couches and flip them over…..sirens stopped…didn’t hear anything….came up to look around….everything seemed fine….2hrs later my husband comes home from work and said a tornado had touched down at the corner of our rd and the rd that crosses it which is 4 house’s down and a field….i said no way….we walked out and had a look…sure enough you seen where it came down and went thru the field and across the road thru that field…ummmm yeah…..i drove right into it not knowing…..all i knew was my child was at home alone and i had to get to her…..

L · July 10, 2013 at 1:36 am

I live in CO and have experience more than a few blizzards that have shut down our town. The stupid thing that people do in this situation is this: they manage to clean off their sidewalks and driveways, but pile the snow in the street! It may be days before the city can have it’s employees clean the side streets. Those people just make it harder for the cars that are trying to drive in the streets. Pile the snow in the yard where it won’t be in anyone else’s way!!

Carolyn · July 10, 2013 at 2:01 am

Two of my pet peeves? People that go outside to watch lightening striking close by….of course they usually stand near trees or large metal objects. People that try to drive to a store (and usually wind up in the ditch) because they think that stores will actually be open during a snow/ice storm because they can’t live without some food item for 1 day.

Carolyn · July 10, 2013 at 2:07 am

My husband jokes about my ‘pantry’. He says it’s ‘so full we could eat for a year off what it contains’….Hello! That is kind of the idea! We may not be at the point of a year (more like 4 months currently) but if I include the freezer items…then ‘yes’ we probably could eat for a year. I thank sites like this for providing me with ideas, recipies, and storage ideas so we will be better prepared in case of an emergency. Now, just need my husband to build that storm shelter… .

Michael Powell · July 10, 2013 at 3:50 am

I got a kick out of a lady on the news that complained, that in the middle
of a power outage, her landlord would not turn the power on to her apartment.

Vicki S · July 10, 2013 at 4:13 am

One Winter when we were living in Montana, we had a freak Winter storm That ended up dumping several feet of snow. At our church, we had a weekly gathering of ladies who got together for a quilting class. We lived in a heavily wooded area and I decided to make the venture out to attend the quilting class. As I drove down the road, there were fallen trees over the road way. There was no way to get through. So I had to back all the way up to our driveway (which was about a mile away) on a one lane road. There was no way to turn around because the road was too narrow due to the heavy snow fall. So instead of going back home and staying warm inside, I decided to go the alternate route to the church praying the whole way. Looking back now, it was a very stupid and dangerous idea to even leave the house. We ended up with a record of 17 feet of snow fall that Winter and were stuck in our house for two weeks until a neighbor kindly brought his CAT tractor with six foot tall tires up to plow us out. I was never so happy to make a trip to the grocery store in my life. Talk about cabin fever!!!

cheryl · July 10, 2013 at 4:41 am

I live in the Columbia Gorge in Washington State. Several years ago we had a main gas line break in the mountains three miles west of my town. The flames were so huge we could see them from my house. Hundreds of feet in the air. People drove up to the disaster to “see” it! The roads were so congested that the firefighters couldn’t get through!!! So……….stay out of the way!!

Arlene · July 10, 2013 at 4:44 am

After one of California’s earthquakes (I lived there during a bunch of them) a man in our ward said he went to the grocery stores right after to stand in the lines because he thought it was exciting to be part of it all . . . even though he had plenty of food and water to last weeks. He even stood in the lines for several hours the next day to get a free case of water. Yes, he also had plenty of money and didn’t need “free” anything.

Vicki · July 10, 2013 at 5:44 am

We moved to the Gulf coast a year and a half ago. Hurricane evacuations are new to us, so we listen closely to those who are experienced. Last year someone asked on Facebook what kind of food people put in their evacuation kits. One mother responded that she just packs enough snacks to keep her kids happy until they get to the evacuation spot (a church about an hour north). I just keep wondering what she thinks her kids are going to eat once they get to that church?

Kathryn Broome · July 10, 2013 at 3:01 pm

My husband and I are over the road truck drivers. This past winter was a doozy for snowstorms all across Interstate 80 from New York to Idaho. We were shut down numerous times when the highway was closed. I couldn’t believe the number of drivers who don’t even carry an extra bottle of water in their trucks. They say they’ll just stop at a truck stop and eat. This winter we saw truck stops and service plaza restaurants that had run out of food. The shelves were cleared and the coffee pots were empty. These guys just stood around complaining that the stores were stupid for not planning better! We always carry water and food for at least a week in our truck. We even have emergency bathroom facilities with a 3 lb. coffee can and gallon size ziplock bags. How can anyone travel the northern part of this country in the winter without provisions?

Tami Burton · July 10, 2013 at 3:21 pm

This is about my own idiotic and potentially dangerous mistake–I’m just relieved that no harm was done. In the early spring of 1991 we had just moved to Rochester, NY. The city experienced one of the worst ice-storms in east coast history. We were renting an old brown-stone home with super thick walls so we didn’t hear the storm raging through the night. A third of the city trees fell, taking down power lines. 200,000 families were left without power for weeks. I got up and readied my daughter for first grade and sent her out to wait for the bus. Some time later, I happened to look out the upstairs window. There she stood, backpack and lunch bag in hand, patiently waiting for a bus that would not make it down our street for several weeks. Broken limbs were blocking the road and our yard as far as the eye could see–higher than a man’s head. Power lines were down and still hot. Additional limbs were falling as I watched. As I ran out to grab her, the sounds of the disaster hit me. The tinkling of ice-covered twigs and leaves filled the air, with occasional crashes from heavy limbs. Homes and vehicles were crushed by falling trees, and people were seriously injured. We learned several lessons during the weeks that followed, and actually brought two families into our home who were not as fortunate or prepared. But I never forgot that I sent my six-year-old out into a very dangerous environment that day.

Penny · July 10, 2013 at 3:36 pm

We are having a terrible rain storm with wind and mega lightening. The phone rings, a friend calls and wants to talk about the storm. Not smart! A Very dangerous place to be is on the phone during lightening, we know someone that when lightening hit it blew their phone right off the wall.

Ben · July 10, 2013 at 5:36 pm

at a little league baseball game, starts thundering and lightning, and instead of packing it up, they keep playing, swinging metal bats, sitting on metal bleachers, etc.

Laura · July 11, 2013 at 1:17 am

I live in a Western State where wildfires are frequent in the summers. The authorities constantly encourage homeowners to have a defensible space around their homes…cut down trees touching the house, etc. I’m always amazed at the number of homeowners who ignore this advice and do things like put cedar shingles on their homes for aesthetic purposes.

lola · July 11, 2013 at 10:06 am

i have friends who let their kids play in the rain and storms i told them there is a difference in the 2 she laughed it off until she read about a person getting struck by lightening now she is more protective of the kids when there is a storm

Jane Reed · July 11, 2013 at 3:50 pm

While driving around with severe thunderstorm warnings, we casually drove down a road in a lovely neighborhood lusciously lined with trees. I exclaimed to my husband, “stop the car!” Stupid as it gets, I leaped out of the car with my precious little granddaughter in tow, and plopped her, to her ultimate delight, in one of the metal-chain swings hanging in the trees along the roadway. Distant thunder coming closer should have been a clue that it wasn’t safe. So what did I do? I walked her down the street to the NEXT beconing swing to give it a try with less gooey mud beneath our feet. Then we sat on the METAL bench by that tree. FINALLY, sanity returned and I heeded the intensifying promptings I was receiving all along to get out of there! We did…immediately!

Brooke · July 11, 2013 at 9:17 pm

I was living in OKC at the time, and hubby was out of town for business trip, leaving me and my 4 year old and newborn alone. For some odd reason, my sister and step sister came to visit (I say odd because they only come around once a year or less). So that evening, tornado alarms start blaring and the sky is pitch black. The news says an F 5 is about a mile away from my house and moving extremely fast. I had an emergency bag already packed and grabbed it and the newborn while my step sister grabs my 4 year old. My sister puts on her flip flops and follows us to the neighbors storm shelter as the storm moves closer. We are going down the shelter steps, and I can hear the train sounds not too far off in the distance, when my sister turns and runs back to my house to the backyard to get my dogs. She then lectures me when she returns, after barely missing the tornado, about forgetting my dogs. Apparently she thought that the emergency bag and my two children weren’t enough for me to worry about and try to rescue. And apparently my dogs were worth her risking her life to go back for. *sigh* I’m not saying if I had a shelter in my own home and had my whole family safe, and the tornado was still far away that I wouldn’t get my dogs, I’m just saying in that specific situation, she was crazy for doing that!

Kellene Bishop · July 11, 2013 at 9:29 pm

🙂 I’m afraid that I would likely risk my life for my dogs (and cat) too–but of course not at the risk of endangering a person’s life. But they are very much a part of our family. Some people have a VERY strong attachment to animals to the point that it’s just as excruciatingly painful to lose a “furry” family member as it is a two-legged flesh member. Sounds like their “instinct” to come visit you was a blessing though–you probably saved their life.

Becky · July 11, 2013 at 10:07 pm

Many, many years ago we had moved to Phoenix AZ. I stayed at the home we rented while my husband went to pickup dinner, so that I could continue to unpack boxes. During the time he was gone a monsoonal rain hit(scarey), I kept unpacking boxes, and then after an hour still no husband or dinner. Finally, after about 2 hours he came dragging in looking like a drown rat with the coldest, greasy chicken I had ever seen and refused eat.
He explained that a car went through one of the areas that had flooded and a young couple were inside the car. The lady was terrified calling out for someone to pull her out of the vehicle, you guessed it. He waded out into the water and pulled her out. According to the lady they were on their first date and the man refused to leave his vehicle, you see it was brand new, and someone would come along and save it and him. After my husband put her on dry soil he went back to try and convince the man no vehicle was worth it. Unfortunately the man and his car were swept away before my husband or the rescue squad could get back to him. It was not a good outcome for the man in the vehicle, they never found him to my knowledge. Taught me a healthy respect for those monsoonal rains during the time we lived there.

John R · July 12, 2013 at 1:17 pm

I have been an over the road trucker for a few years and what I wish everyone with a SUV would understand is hydroplaning. In a heavy storm, water will puddle in the wheel tracks of a well worn road. When this happens, slow down. You will loose control of you top heavy vehicle. Every time, and I mean every time (not sometime) there is a heavy rain, I will see a SUV on it’s side or on its top in the median or on the shoulder of the road. Slow down..

John R · July 12, 2013 at 1:38 pm

I had just moved to Ky during the blizzard of “78”. The snow had started before Thanksgiving and was still on the ground in the spring. Me having a 4 wheel drive truck (and my family safe) volunteered to transport hospital workers from the hospital to their homes. The volunteer organization I worked with would only allow you to leave if there were 2 vehicles to travel together.
I remember this one big storm and two of us picked up this nurse that had to get home to her “baby”. She wanted us to stop at a grocery store, then drive her 20 miles to her home. We stopped at the store. There was only 3 gallons of milk left, and she took all of them. She took all the bread still on the shelves, instead of leaving some for the next people.
On the way we hit snow drifts 4 to 5 feet deep. Our trucks couldn’t plow though snow that deep, so we had to shovel a way through. Very exhausting and hard work. Hours later we arrived at the nurse’s home to rescue “baby”. When we got there, “baby” asked us to go back to the store and get her some cigarettes.
Yes, I was disgusted. Why did the nurse have to lie? We would still have driven her home. Why did she have to clean the store of what little food the store had left? Makes me think of the saying, “you cant fix stupid”.

    Kellene Bishop · July 12, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    I too would be at least modestly disgusted with a woman who puts the life of others at risk for a charade like this. In fact, I’d be inclined to document the event and require that person to PAY, out of her own pocket for the emergency services that were performed on her behalf under such false pretense.

    However, as for purchasing what was left at the store…It’s important to prepare in all things based on principles as principles never change and they make tough decisions simple and clear. Based on principles, I’m not fond of “leaving some for the next people” mentality, just FYI. If it’s something that I legitimately need, and I put forth the effort to purchase it, then I buy it. And I do so without even the slightest concern that I’m guilty of any sin. That “leave some for others” mentality takes into assumption so many hypotheticals when I’m dealing with present facts. I need it. I can pay for it. I’ll purchase it while it’s here. And Lord knows I’ve prepared extensively specifically TO help others. If I don’t get what I can get when I can get it, then there’s a majority chance that the next person who might take “just because” won’t be anywhere near as accessible or charitable as I would be. It’s dangerous to get into a mindset to villify others who have in a crisis just because one finds themself in want. It’s very dangerous to think that way as it leads the way for a person feeling justified to help themselves to that work product and preparation of others. Just my two cents.

Vern Harris · July 12, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Why are your articles such that they cannot be copied and pasted into a word processing document so they can be filed and saved. I like to separate preparedness articles into general cateagories and then add files as I get good ones. I sure would like to do this with your articles also.

Mike the Gardener · July 12, 2013 at 7:15 pm

My favorite are those that rush out and buy nothing but perishables then say “if my power goes out, I am ready” … good grief.

Treva · July 12, 2013 at 7:16 pm

Now I know none of “us” would do this, but there ARE folks who go sit outside and “watch’ a big lightning show as if it were a fireworks display. Not if you would send me the kit, I would be set as I sit inside.

Bon White · July 12, 2013 at 7:27 pm

I once saw a lady buy 20 cases – the ENTIRE stock that was left of water, about 5 days before a hurricane hit. Three days after the hurricane, she was in line to return it all. Mind you, they can’t resell this water, so all of it got wasted. Right when people wanted water too! COMPLETELY ticked me off.

Nancy B from Many LA · July 12, 2013 at 7:28 pm

Lived in St Bernard Parish for Katrina. A lot of people stayed, made sure they had their beer, but not much else. Then it flooded, and they had to be rescued from their roofs…..If you are going to stay, make sure you have supplies!

Nancy B from Many LA · July 12, 2013 at 7:30 pm

My kids knew a boy who was flying his kite when the winds picked up, it started lightning, and got a lot worse. His girlfriend begged him to go home and stop, but he didn’t, got hit by lightning, and died…. This was about 2 years ago.

Bon White · July 12, 2013 at 7:31 pm

Another idiot I had the pleasure of watching was going to fill their vehicle with all of their canned food. Then, when the sirens came on, they left the vehicle in the garage, and left with another vehicle. When we returned, we noticed their garage had suffered significant tornado damage. All the food was smashed everywhere, the car was at the neighbors tossed over on it’s side, and their garage was gone. Their house, was fine. Why they didn’t leave in their “food car” is beyond me, or leave their canned food in the house even……..Surely a house would have been a safer choice than a light weight car!

Bon White · July 12, 2013 at 7:35 pm

Some people just don’t get it. Common sense is becoming a luxury now-a-days. Once, when we were camping, my husband was spraying our tent with water proof sealant, and letting it air dry. Then while doing a second coat, the “neighbors” came over and told us that stuff never works, and it’s a waste of money. That night it rained. BAD. We were all dry, and they were camping in their little 4 door sedan, after being soaked to death in their tent. LOL

    Joseph McCluskey · July 12, 2013 at 9:39 pm

    Tents that are water repellent are not water proof. The water proof sealer will hurt the breathing ability of the material, but you will remain dry.

stephanie n · July 12, 2013 at 7:39 pm

While working at a gas station years ago I had to manually shut down the gas pumps during a tornado warning because people would not quit pumping gas. They literally just stood by their cars and watched the wall cloud come towards us.

Doris King · July 12, 2013 at 7:45 pm

Drive through the flooding waters to go to Ingle’s to buy a loaf of bread! Ha Ha!

Linda · July 12, 2013 at 7:50 pm

You forgot those kids on the east coast that go out surfing when a hurricane is coming because the waves are great to surf in!

debbie · July 12, 2013 at 8:11 pm

my mom is also one that thinks we are not supposed to prep but to rely only on God. good thing i take a bit more initiative than that. her town’s water lines had a break and were out at least 2 days. the restaurants and all water reliant facilities were shut down, even the hospital moved the people out. bottled water was hard to come by but i keep many cases of it. i just had to load it up and take it over.

debbie · July 12, 2013 at 8:14 pm

we had wildfires thru here last fall and i did get hit. thank goodness for my insurance man and my cellar where we threw a bunch of stuff down in. i also had items in a storage building some miles away so we were not completely left needy. there were many people afterwards sleeping in tents, etc in the august heat.

Joseph McCluskey · July 12, 2013 at 9:36 pm

The day before Superstorm Sandy hit, I went to my small engine repair shop to buy some oil and he had about 100 small engine generators there.I asked him what was up? He said everybody was bringing in their generators because they would not start. STABIL, people!!! This is not a worthless product. Use it on your generator, snowblower, leaf blower or lawn mower. This is a must have item!!

Becca · July 12, 2013 at 9:38 pm

My old neighbor, in the week of last year’s hurricane that hit us in Richmond, waited until the storm was upon us to go buy a generator. We had warnings a week prior. The sadder part was that he wasn’t the only one scrambling to find one…but everyone was sold out. He told my husband that the places he went were packed with people trying to find generators. Not smart.

SW · July 12, 2013 at 10:01 pm

Living on an island at the East coast in the south, we get a lot of practice in hurricane evacuations. There used to be an older couple down the street that would never leave on mandatory evacuations. They didn’t want looters to take their antiques! The bridges are closed, and guarded by National Guard, so no one goes back until the order has been lifted. The only ones left on the island are those who refuse to leave. I’d rather save lives, than save antiques!
There would be no EMS, no doctor, no utilities ( they are turned off at evacuations), no services. If something happened, they would be on their own for days. No antique is worth that risk.

SW · July 12, 2013 at 10:12 pm

In the event of hurricane, and no mandatory evacuations, being prepared is essential. Water, food, methods of cooking, lighting, tarps for covering roof damage, etc., are all needed. The utilities turn off the services and then turn them back on after evacuations. The water has to be flushed through the utility system , so it is not contaminated from their origin to your home through the pipe system.
Water has to be stored for a few days. One can use the water heater as a source, but that is not the best answer. We have “WaterBob” bath tub water bladders/ bags that fit in the the bath tub. they are filled in place in the tub by the faucet, then capped. There is a siphon that can be used to get water for drinking, flushing, cleaning, etc. Two tubs with the “water Bob” will be more than enough for a family. I also have Fusti(s)- used for storing olive oil, but I use them to store water in emergency. They are stainless steel and have carry handles, so portable. They have spigots for easy dispensing. This is much easier than cases of water bottles.. and then the plastic bottle trash to deal with.

The water bladders are temporary water containers, and require a small amount of pre-planning ( 30 minutes) to fill prior to leaving, or staying in place.
It is not permanent water storage, but better than nothing – fast, efficient, doesn’t require a lot of storage space ( a few inches long and maybe 3 inches wide on the shelf of a closet).

SW · July 12, 2013 at 10:18 pm

Generators are never available just prior to storms or bad weather. Everyone has the same idea! I know people that had very large ones put/built on a slab to feed the entire house. During the storms, they are the only ones in the area with power. neighbors/ friends go there to cook dinner or visit during the storms… knowing it is lit and safe. They put it in during the calm season.
I hope to get one, as well. I have a solar oven, and camp stoves… but during a storm and subsequent power outages ( not as frequent where I live, vs where they live- a frequent event). I am also considering a wood stove that bakes/ cooks as well.
The generator for the house is the best solution during power outages and bad weather.

Desta · July 12, 2013 at 10:19 pm

The idiots that go out in the worst of it to get somewhere else or fruitlessly try to get supplies instead of doing that before it hits, or just hunkering down somewhere safe.

Treva · July 12, 2013 at 10:32 pm

going out to see a storm damaged area and causing road blockages for emergency personnel trying to reach the scene is a “what not to do in a storm”.

Suzie Saintswin · July 12, 2013 at 11:29 pm

I hope I haven’t already made this comment. I’m a techno tard and so sometimes….

This wasn’t a dumb thing done “amidst” a severe storm warning. In fact, the weatherman said the snow flurries would dissipate quickly and that there’d be no accumulation. What was dumb was believing the weatherman and not being prepared “just in case.”

I’m from Louisiana. This was my first snow storm in Manassas, Virginia. My boyfriend had scraped the ice off my car and had the engine and heater running so that my car was nice and toasty when I ran out of my apartment, jumped into the car and drove to the train station at Vienna WITHOUT a coat or even a jacket. I had on tennis shoes and not the dress shoes that went with my skirt and blouse, not because of the storm but because I drove a stick shift and didn’t want to scuff my good shoes. I changed into dress shoes when I got to the office.

So, I rode the train into D.C. to work. and it turned out that the storm didn’t blow over and by noon the state police had closed the interstates.

I had been holed up in the law library at work – no calls, no contact with others and didn’t get the word that we were to evacuate until late. By then, there were long delays in the trains which usually run every few minutes. I had to huddle with complete strangers on an outdoor platform while waiting for the train.

It was a nightmare! I swore to myself that winter wouldn’t catch me in that city again and moved within a year.

Jessica · July 12, 2013 at 11:42 pm

During severe storms with dangerous (any) lightening, I’ve seen people stand under awnings, trees, park shelters, etc. thinking they were safe from the lightening.

Jessica · July 12, 2013 at 11:45 pm

As a former paramedic, having untrained, unaffiliated, & uninvited people “respond” to disasters in an attempt to help. It just adds to the chaos and adds to the responsibilities of law enforcement & those in command. I’ve also seen it add to the number of injuries that needed attending to.

Jessica · July 12, 2013 at 11:52 pm

Again, as a former paramedic, I’ve seen a lot of dumb things that have been done in disaster type situations. This one occurred during an MCI (mass casualty incident). During the first moments of an MCI, command has to be set up and triage has to begin. It was during triage that this comes to mind. I saw people/patients that would get upset when responders didn’t immediately treat their friends or loved ones. It made it difficult for other responders who were tasked with triaging and those tasked with treating & moving to do their job. Chaos makes it difficult for most people to deal with disasters but if they are mentally prepared, it makes everything to much more smoothly. It also frees up law enforcement who may otherwise be needed to calm down irate persons who want their loved ones treated immediately.

Becca · July 13, 2013 at 12:35 am

Here’s one of my stupid acts. Back in February 2001 I was living 30 minutes north of the city. We had a blizzard hit central Virginia. We were told it was bad, and not to drive unless an emergency. Dummy me thought “I was born in raised in Pennsylvania…I know how to drive in the snow.” I had a video that needed to be returned to Blockbuster, and didn’t want to pay the late fee. So I got in my Chevy S-10 pickup truck (that had NO weight in the bed) and left for the video store. Heading down I-95, traffic was at a snail pace. I made it to the video store, but heading home traffic was rerouted to RT 1 because they closed 95 down. It was bumper to bumper traffic…cars, trucks, and big rigs. About halfway home I went over a bridge and my truck fishtailed. Although I would have been able to correct it, a semi truck was right on my bumper, too close to stop in time, especially travelling on snow and ice packed roads. I was T-boned, pushed into the oncoming two lanes of traffic, up an embankment, and into at tree. The driver’s side door frame buckled on impact from the semi, the metal slamming into my head rendering me unconscious. Although I was wearing my seat belt, when I slammed into the tree I was passed out and sideways on the seat, and that second impact flew me forward into the tall gear shift. I am lucky to be alive but suffer permanent memory loss from the accident. I had a cracked skull, needed 7 staples in my head, my pelvis was broken in two places, a collapsed lung, and plenty of bruises, cuts, and scrapes. It took me a few months to be able to walk without the use of a walker or crutches.
So what do I do now when they issue a storm warning? I stay put. I don’t go out. If the news says to stay home, I listen. I definitely learned my lesson.

    Kellene Bishop · July 13, 2013 at 2:34 am

    A lesson earned is a lesson learned. 🙂

Charity · July 13, 2013 at 2:42 am

When we had flash flooding where we live the high road had water rushing over it so a gentlemen went to the lower end of town with his truck thinking he could drive right thru mind u there is a maybe 45* degree difference from high road to low road and he proceeded thru water immediately went up to truck windows and had to be rescued by rescue boat the fire department has . His truck WAS a nice truck and he couldn’t believe it was that deep! Know your evacuation route or lay of land to escape and find those roads. They shut down a major highway cause of the flash flood

Charity · July 13, 2013 at 2:57 am

Local fire departments got called out for co detector going off in a residence in the middle of blizzard that power was blinking off and on and home owner was using a outdoor heating unit indoors without proper ventilation the family was huddled in car waiting for fire department to inspect what was wrong ! Have a proper and safe heating unit or back up plan for warmth in winter.

Becky Whaley · July 15, 2013 at 5:17 pm

Tornado warning for your area? Do NOT open the door and look outside to see if anything is going on. I heard wind whipping around and opened the back door to see what was happening. Looked like weather was going to get nasty (well, duh?). Heard the sound of a train – up in the air. Oh, that’s not normal. OH, that’s a tornado close by! Quickly shut the back door and headed to the interior hall. Thankfully the worse damage was a block east of us.

J.G.R. · July 19, 2013 at 1:26 am

Definitely travel with extra blankets, warm outerwear, extra food, chains, and hand/body warmers in your car during the winter! As a young girl, my family got stuck in a blizzard without any of that gear at the top of the Siskiyou Summit at the California/Oregon border. The National Guard had to come rescue us and other stranded travelers. I have witnessed late snows in March and April as well in the Northwest. Carry chains just in case!

Kellene Bishop · July 25, 2013 at 2:44 am

Rebecca Alley is the winner for the Severe Storm Preparedness Giveaway from STABIL.
Rose of Prepping in the Garden won one of the Naughty Baby Cloth Diaper sets and
Matt who’s waiting on baby #6 to arrive won the other drawing. 🙂
Congrats to all of our winners! And a special thanks to and Gold Eagle Co. who sponsored the special pack from STABIL and Start Your Engines. 🙂

If you’re one of the owners you need to provide me your mailing address (no PO boxes) within 48 hours so that we can ship you your prize!!!

lola · August 12, 2013 at 7:46 pm

you should never wait til the weathermen says huricane is coming this is a great giveaway

lola · August 12, 2013 at 7:48 pm

always have some food and drink in the car never know whenyou may get stuck because of flooding or ice and snow. arry extra clothes too

lola · August 12, 2013 at 7:52 pm

if electricity goes off you will need to be able to cook food we have charcoal and propane to cook or canned food

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