hunker in the bunker

The lashing we got a few weeks ago from ex-TC Lee Harvey Oswald gave me a rude shock. I took it a bit personally, as I am the one responsible for keeping my family well-fed,and Oswald’s shenanigans put a crimp in my ability to do that.

I plan not to be caught out like that again.

We have had very heavy rain here on the Sunshine Coast before. Our record in the 6 years we’ve been here was 873mm in January 2011, but there have been several months when rainfall exceeded 500mm. Every time this happens, the road bridge over the South Mooloolah River goes under. When it does, we have the devil of a time getting to shops and petrol stations. We are used to it. We live with it. Before Oswald (B.O.) we had never been cut off for more than 24 hours.

We have had power outages before; quite often in fact. The infrastructure around the Coast here must be a bit below par, or else I can’t understand why. However, we have met that challenge with a 2.8kva petrol generator, hard wired to the house via a change-over switch, giving us perfectly acceptable stand-by electricity to power the water pump, the fridge and freezer, phone and internet, Christopher’s high-tech special equipment, and about half of the house lights. We are used to it. We live with it. B.O., we never had to run the generator for more than a few hours until mains power was restored.

Thanks to Oswald, we were cut off for about 48 hours. We had no power for 3 days. The entire village was without power, so no fridges at the supermarket, no EFTPOS(!), and no pumps at the service station. The phone lines went down for 3 days. So no internet. Then the mobile phone service went down for about 36 hours, so no outside contact at all. Oswald effected such a wide area of QLD to the north and south of us, Energex crews had to wait several days before they could get to areas where damage had caused interruption to power supply.

I got to thinking…what if we have another event that cuts us off for 3-4 days AND the generator conks out?

My contingency plan B.O. always managed to keep going for about 24 hours.We now have a contingency plan that will hopefully cover us for up to 4 days.

feeding the family

feeding the family

It involves getting cash and petrol (about 60 litres). I always have about 10 litres on hand, but I needed about 40 litres for 3 days, and that was with the generator shut down overnight.I was able to borrow 10 litres of fuel from a neighbour down the road, and that got me out of trouble on day 2. After things got back to normal, I bought him a roast to help restock his freezer – he has no generator and lost everything he couldn’t cook and eat.

I also now have a little bunker supply of non-perishables in a corner of the pantry. I always had some  bits and pieces, but only enough for a day or two. In addition to what you see in the picture, I also have a 10 litre water bottle for drinking water; but, even without power, I can always head down to one of the tanks and draw off more from a gravity-fed tap.

I have a gas stove, emergency lights and a portable transistor radio. What have I missed? Maybe a little gas-powered fridge for the insulin?

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~ by Garry on February 24, 2013.

One Response to “hunker in the bunker”

  1. Sounds like you have everything covered. Dad has a 20 ltr metal jerrycan (in the shed!!)you can have if you need an extra for the future.

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