The U.S. faced a whole host of natural disasters in 2017. Adding them all together resulted in 2017 being the most expensive year on record for U.S. natural disasters and many forecasters see this trend continuing well into the future.
The US experienced a record year of losses from fires, hurricanes and other weather related disasters in 2017, according to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa).
Total losses amounted to $306bn the agency said, over $90bn more than the previous record set in 2005.
Last year saw 16 separate events with losses exceeding $1bn, including Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
Noaa confirmed that 2017 was the third warmest year on record for the US.
Last year witnessed two Category 4 hurricanes make landfall in the States.
As we head into 2018, it’s a good time for each of us to put aside some time to take a hard look at ourselves and determine if we really are prepared for natural disasters.
If you’ve been preparing for a government meltdown, financial collapse or an EMP, then you’re probably mostly prepared for natural disasters like floods, hurricanes, and wildfires.
If you’ve been putting off getting started down the road to preparedness, then now is the time! Check out our article on tips for beginning preppers if you’re not sure where to start.
Either way, there are a lot of things that specifically go into preparing for natural disasters that aren’t always associated with preparing for other events.
Prepping for a Natural Disaster
- Be ready to bug out! – Mother Nature is often far more destructive than any kind of potential man-made event.
- My normal suggestion is to bug in if at all possible. With natural disasters that can be a horrible recommendation. This is one of those times where you’re really going to have to evaluate your situation well. If there’s any doubt, and you have forewarning, I would suggest leaving before the event hits you.
- Learn how to put together a bug out bag list that works for you.
- Don’t expect FEMA to be able to protect you or to be able to provide enough food, water, and shelter for everyone affected.
With the destabilizing climate, we can expect more “100-year” floods and “once-in-a-lifetime” storms just as resource depletion, deregulation and an eroding tax base are rendering us far less able to recover afterward. The House of Representatives recently put forth a staggering $81 billion disaster aid package, almost double the $44 billion requested by the Trump administration, and if it’s approved it would mean tens of billions of dollars for FEMA and community programs. Even so, we’re running just to stay in place – or fall behind.
FEMA administrator and Trump appointee, Brock Long, says his organization can’t necessarily be counted upon to help disaster-ravaged Americans. As he explained in a CNN interview this month, FEMA is broke, the disaster relief system is broken, and Americans are going to have to learn to take care of themselves. This fits right in with the apparent Trump agenda to smash the administrative state.
- Prepare for extended periods without power.
- Power is often one of the first things to go during a large storm or another disaster. People who have medications that need refrigeration or others that rely on electricity to provide some life-saving service need to have a solid plan ahead of time.
- In some extreme cases, people will be without power for months.
- Don’t discount the power of insurance!
- Chances are you will be facing extensive property loss and damage if you’ve experienced a severe natural disaster. It’s also a good bet that the government is still intact and modern forms of preparedness like insurance will still be valid.
- Even if you’re only renting, look into the benefits of renters insurance. It offers a wide range of coverage for most common disasters.
This is just a quick list of things you can do to prepare in advance of a natural disaster. All of the typical preparations that we discuss mostly apply here as well.
Do you have any suggestions on how to prepare for a natural disaster? Leave your comments below!