Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:29 pm

superjawes wrote:
paulWTAMU wrote:where do you buy 5 gallon buckets of soda?! That sounds like useful info for me to have anyway.

If it's a keg, try a liquor store that will sell kegs of soda. Really. I had to get a keg of root beer for an event a couple years back and they got me a full size one within a couple days.

I hope that rootbeer had alcohol in it. It'll keep longer that way :wink:
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:35 pm

JohnC wrote:Tap water is still present, but now has the color of the water flowing outside the house :o Good thing the water levels seem to be decreasing very slightly - I can open the side door on first floor without flooding the corridor :wink:


That's probably just the local government flooding the streets with the water main- Gotta make it look like they made the right call ;)
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:37 pm

JohnC wrote:Tap water is still present, but now has the color of the water flowing outside the house :o Good thing the water levels seem to be decreasing very slightly - I can open the side door on first floor without flooding the corridor :wink:

Yeaaah, I wouldn't be drinking (or bathing in) the tap water for a couple of days... I'd stick to bottled water and beer.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 9:36 pm

JohnC wrote:Tap water is still present, but now has the color of the water flowing outside the house :o

Hopefully you filled some jugs before it got icky? (Or have an ample supply of beer... :lol:)
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 9:47 pm

Even if the tap water starts to turn icky, you might want to fill up a couple 5-gallon buckets (or the bathtub) with it.

Here's why: If the power stays out for a long time and your water pressure drops (water towers rely on electric pumps to maintain the pressure via the column of water), you'll still want to be able to flush your toilets.

A 30-gallon bathtub and a couple-gallon bucket will allow you to flush quite a few times!

Personally, I won't screw around with hurricanes anymore. Charlie taught me that the best thing to do is to scram town when one is headed this way.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 9:57 pm

No bathtubs in the house. We have 2 working cars parked on next block (which is completely undamaged), we can always use them to fetch all the water (I can't drink beer... Celiac Disease and other auto-immune diseases :-( ) we need, OR drive to any numerous relatives who are located in safe zones to take showers and stuff.
P.S: AT&T sux :evil:
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 11:21 pm

Just watched the Con Edison power outage map... 100's of 1000's of ppl without power all over NYC, obviously no ETA on when the power restoration will occur. Also a power outage in our office area in NJ, but the generator there works perfectly.
Watched the local news - NYU hospital lost all power (all generators failed), they are moving patients around. Our local hospital (SIUH) is still up and running.

Good thing is the water is receding over here, no flood damage to our house whatsoever (except the paved driveway, which now looks like it was carpet-bombed, with lots of debris and sand and rocks brought by ocean waves). No electricity = teh suck :-( Charging my portables using fully charged UPS unit (it has USB ports for charging) - Cyberpower 1350PFC, good unit, highly recommended!
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Mon Oct 29, 2012 11:54 pm

JohnC wrote: AT&T sux


You will learn that lots of things suck in the aftermath of a hurricane.

After my first hurricane, I realized just how easily my stupid cockiness could have gotten me killed. Killed. Dead. X's for eyes!

Trees crushed my neighbors's cars, heavy concrete roof tiles too! My car escaped serious damage only by PURE LUCK. I now declutter regularly so that I can always store my car(s) in my garage.

Leaving is best, safest, of course. But even when you come back, you might not have infrastructure except for what you have provided for yourself.

So now I always have some fresh drinking water in the fridge and a case of bottled water in the cupboard. I save the bottled water, but after about a year, I'll drink it all and replace it the next time I go shopping at Sam's Club. Always also have at least some fuel for the gas grill and the charcoal grill. Like others have said, you can cook frozen meat and feed yourself for a day or two before things begin to spoil.

Canned food and cured meats are unhealthy on a day-to-day basis (and I can't stand the taste of the salt), but they don't need refrigeration and they will keep you alive for a very long time assuming that you have fresh water and your stomach can handle an emergency diet change. It doesn't hurt to keep some soups, chicken, beef, or tuna cans on hand. Charlie the Tuna can be your friend! I never eat some of that stuff even though I have it, so at Christmas time, I rotate it out by putting it in the donation bag. I'll restock the cupboard at the same time I buy that bottled water on my next trip to Sam's Club.

I have also considered getting a big ice chest or "kegerator" type icebox just to keep in the garage. Big, but movable; maybe even on wheels so that I can get it out of the heat in an emergency. That way if the power goes out and stays out for more than an hour or two, I can immediately move food from the fridge/freezer to the ice chest.

You might be surprised at how much it will cost to restock your refrigerator. When Charlie hit and I had lost power for about 4 days, about $700 worth of food spoiled in the thawing fridge and icebox. Insurance doesn't cover that, ouch!

With fresh water, food, and fuel, I can sustain myself and even a neighbor or two for several days. Without having to go fishing in the lake or shooting birds or squirrels out of the trees. But if I had to, I could do that too...

There's quite a lot you can do without spending money on a generator, but if you have health concerns or medicines/foods that you must keep chilled, then a generator might be a worthwhile expense. I have even thought about buying a whole-house generator, or at least one large enough to run the refrigerator and an AC or space-heater (depending on your climate). With those two things working and a large fuel tank, I could sustain myself for a couple weeks to a month or more.

Note also that without electricity, gas stations can't pump gas. So a high-mileage car and a couple gallons of gas in the garage will allow me to drive nearly a thousand miles. That's far enough to help loved ones in my area and/or to get as far as I need to to find a gas station with electricity or a place to sleep with Air Conditioning.

If it's a bad one, it's always better to pack your most valuable stuff and LEAVE. Some hurricanes will spawn dozens of tornadoes! For crying out loud, why stay with that sh.. coming after you? I never EVER want to look like those people who didn't listen and who had to be rescued in New Orleans by helicopters, or some dork who had to be found paralyzed or dead under the rubble of his exploded house! :-? If you're smart, none of that is necessary!

Even without storms, our infrastructure could be disrupted by any number of events, and those who have made at least SOME preparations will be the ones best equipped to avoid serious injury or loss of life.

I could go on here, and it probably won't do much to help at this point.

I sincerely hope everybody in the TR family and readers too, are okay...
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:19 am

Batteries on mobiles charged. Since temperatures were dropping and our water heating requires electricity to run its pump, I have connected UPS to teh heater and using up remaining power to heat up teh house. Still kicking myself for not getting portable gasoline generator in time! :evil: That's the ONLY mistake we did so far.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 2:16 am

Well still have power and the dogs are ready for those cats "they are just cats" but there is one with joker makeup on! He is a criminal!
I am a total animal lover here, may not be fond of cats but it never stops me from petting one that hops on my lap. I may hunt and have killed a dozen or so deer. Even had to once put a deer that had been hit by a car out of its misery with a 22oz roofing hammer. I shook in my truck for 30 minutes on the ride home but the look on everyone's face "jaws wide open" when i put the hammer in the back of my truck was truly priceless. Since it was a big traffic jam on rt 202 near i95. It may have looked ruthless but it was better then letting the poor deer spit up blood for 20 minutes and suffer.

Just wanted to say i am not a mean person john and i am very glad the water did not make it into your house. I am hearing the battery went over 14ft. Insanely impressive. Stay out of the water too lots of bad stuff is floating around in it from the sewage ETC.
Do not want to get any of that crap in your system if your dealing with a auto immune disorder. If you have to use the tap water for anything i would boil it first.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:10 am

mnecaise wrote:
superjawes wrote:
paulWTAMU wrote:where do you buy 5 gallon buckets of soda?! That sounds like useful info for me to have anyway.

If it's a keg, try a liquor store that will sell kegs of soda. Really. I had to get a keg of root beer for an event a couple years back and they got me a full size one within a couple days.

I hope that rootbeer had alcohol in it. It'll keep longer that way :wink:

I was in a fraternity in college. Both nationals and our university had pretty harsh rules against alcohol during rush events. So instead, we brought a root beer keg to the house for an alcohol-free party. It's still one of the best events we throw each year.

EDITPS: Ya'll doing okay out there?
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:41 am

JohnC wrote:Batteries on mobiles charged. Since temperatures were dropping and our water heating requires electricity to run its pump, I have connected UPS to teh heater and using up remaining power to heat up teh house. Still kicking myself for not getting portable gasoline generator in time! :evil: That's the ONLY mistake we did so far.

UPS isn't going to do squat to heat the house unless it is a rather large one intended to run an entire server rack for an extended period of time. Go break out the warm blankets and/or sleeping bags...
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:24 am

Seeing pictures this morning. Devastating.

Yes, be careful what you drink. Even tap water is probably not safe in many areas now. That's why I keep the case of fresh water.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:45 am

JohnC wrote:Just watched the Con Edison power outage map... 100's of 1000's of ppl without power all over NYC, obviously no ETA on when the power restoration will occur.

Mayor Bloomberg was just quoted as saying that it could be "two or three days ... or maybe even longer".
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:50 am

just brew it! wrote:
JohnC wrote:Just watched the Con Edison power outage map... 100's of 1000's of ppl without power all over NYC, obviously no ETA on when the power restoration will occur.
Mayor Bloomberg was just quoted as saying that it could be "two or three days ... or maybe even longer".

Underground utilities are a great idea as long as "Underground > Storm Surge Levels". Don't even want to think what would have happened if storm surge met a ConEd steam line.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:56 am

Captain Ned wrote:Underground utilities are a great idea as long as "Underground > Storm Surge Levels". Don't even want to think what would have happened if storm surge met a ConEd steam line.

There was a video attached to one of the news stories last night, looked like it was from a security camera. It showed (from several blocks away) what may have been a power substation exploding. One second things looked (relatively) normal; then there were two bright flashes that washed out nearly the entire frame; when the flash faded, all the nearby buildings had gone dark.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:37 am

Per NYT, ConEd confirmed a substation explosion (click or scroll down to the 8:20am update).

However, even the underground stuff that was safely shut down, is going to be a nightmare to bring back online. High voltage power cable fittings into equipment are moisture proof under ordinary ambient conditions, but they're not meant to be submerged in salt water. Wouldn't be surprised if they have to pull, clean, reconnect, and test a few hundred of them per street-block before restoring service.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:40 am

Speaking of things that don't like being submerged in salt water, I wonder how many vehicles were wrecked by the storm surge?
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:43 am

just brew it! wrote:Speaking of things that don't like being submerged in salt water, I wonder how many vehicles were wrecked by the storm surge?

Plenty, I am sure. I've seen a few pictures from NYC where water was up near the roofs of cars left on the street.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 1:15 pm

superjawes wrote:
just brew it! wrote:Speaking of things that don't like being submerged in salt water, I wonder how many vehicles were wrecked by the storm surge?

Plenty, I am sure. I've seen a few pictures from NYC where water was up near the roofs of cars left on the street.


This is a problem after any major flooding event. Those cars will always have problems now, from musty, mildewy stink to rust in weird places or electronic gremlins popping up without warning.

Many will be refurbished and some will attempt to be sold in non-flood locations without proper disclosure. Always get the CarFax!
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 5:01 pm

**** sux... ConEd just released a horrible statement:

"The company estimates that customers in Brooklyn and Manhattan served by underground electric equipment should have power back within four days. Restoration to all customers in other areas served by overhead power lines will take at least a week."

"At least a week" of no electricity, no internets, no phone, no room heat, no hot water :o :( :cry: Should've purchased a **** generator when I had a chance :evil:
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 5:09 pm

Sounds like time to go stay with friends or relatives if you can. Nighttime temps will be down in the 30s by the weekend.

Even if you'd managed to get the generator, would you be able to get a week's worth of fuel for it? Or were you looking at one that is powered by natural gas (assuming your gas service still works)?

With over 7 million people without power up and down the coast, the 1 week restoration time may even be optimistic...
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 5:48 pm

just brew it! wrote:Even if you'd managed to get the generator, would you be able to get a week's worth of fuel for it?

Yes. Many of good quality generators are very fuel-efficient due to auto-throttling features (when generator can run at very low RPM's at lower loads). We have visited several locations today and refueled our cars - the gas stations in an areas not affected by outages are still working and receiving their regular gasoline supplies. Most of the roads are now clean from debris, including our community, the bridges are open, so getting supplies (gasoline, water, batteries) is not currently an issue. Several of people in our community already running teh generators :(
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:05 pm

John, if you decide to get a generator, you'll have a whole 'nother adventure in store for you.

Generators go through A LOT OF FUEL very quickly. You may be shocked and dismayed at how quickly a tank of gas is burned up just running a fridge and a few lights or heat sources. ESPECIALLY heat sources. Your wife's hair dryer or your daughter's curling iron, for example. Assuming that baths and showers are even available. AirCon, refrigerator, space heaters, too.

If you buy a generator, go ahead and get a good one, and then be prepared to never need it again as long as you live. If you do buy one, this will roughly approximate your emotions from purchase through a week of ownership ---> :D :) :-? :o :o :x :( :cry:

If you have a family, this will be the faces your wife and kids will give you ----> :evil: :evil: :evil: ...when you begin to make noises about limiting their use of fuel to run waffle makers, hair curlers, computers, and games because the (sensible) priorities are basic food and shelter and avoiding freezing in the night.

Prepare yourself; this is gonna cost.

But on the bright side, at least you are alive and hopefully still in good health. With this, all things are possible. Stay safe.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:36 pm

Don't worry - we only need generator for basic needs, to run a fridge, the water heating system and hot water boiler (all of which unfortunately require electricity to run pumps/fans). Plus charge our mobile devices and maybe use a couple of lights. No need to power computers (no internet), same goes for TV's for the same reason. And nobody here uses hair dryers. We do use an electric tea kettle, though :wink:
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:42 pm

BIF wrote:John, if you decide to get a generator, you'll have a whole 'nother adventure in store for you.

Generators go through A LOT OF FUEL very quickly. You may be shocked and dismayed at how quickly a tank of gas is burned up just running a fridge and a few lights or heat sources. ESPECIALLY heat sources. Your wife's hair dryer or your daughter's curling iron, for example. Assuming that baths and showers are even available. AirCon, refrigerator, space heaters, too.

If you buy a generator, go ahead and get a good one, and then be prepared to never need it again as long as you live. If you do buy one, this will roughly approximate your emotions from purchase through a week of ownership ---> :D :) :-? :o :o :x :( :cry:
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Prepare yourself; this is gonna cost.


I second this from experience. John, it's too late now to prepare for Sandy; but, for the future when it happens again (and it will happen again) you might want to pay for a permanently installed natural gas powered generator. Provided you have natural gas or bulk propane available. It'll be expensive but you'll not have to worry about fuel. A portable gasoline fueled generator is a thirsty beast. Read the fuel usage guidelines -- they usually read something like one 5-8 gallon tank of gas lasts 10-12 hours at half load. It's not uncommon for a gasoline generator to burn through 10+ gallons in a 24 hour day (assuming you leave it running all night to power lights, refrigerators, and heaters).

After Isabel came through Hampton Roads, there were lines every day at the gas stations. People were lining up to fill 5 gallon gas cans...
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:04 pm

mnecaise wrote:I second this from experience. John, it's too late now to prepare for Sandy; but, for the future when it happens again (and it will happen again) you might want to pay for a permanently installed natural gas powered generator.


Not good here. Since we live near water, there's a great risk of flooding the generator (a portable one we can put on a porch on second floor). Plus they take a HUGE (compared to portable ones) amount of space and are more loud. Not to mention that we can't (temporarily) provide it to our friends/relatives who might also need it (for example if we have electricity and they do not).

We do have a standby natural gas generator at office in NJ, which is perfect for that location - it's far away from all water, there was plenty of space to mount it and the noise is not bothersome since there are no residential homes around it.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:17 pm

Whole-house gennies are not the big Cat units you see in most bank parking lots. Generac makes a line of LPG/NG generators from 10 kW up to 40 kW that are quite quiet (68db or so) and are only twice the size of a beefy portable (7Kw range), running off 2 cylinder air-cooled motors in the 20 kW range. Once you hit 30 kW, you start moving to 4 cylinders and liquid cooling.

Thankfully Sandy was a no-show here, otherwise SWMBO would be bitching about the impending $5K purchase of a 20 kW (LPG rating, NG 18 kW) NG-powered whole-house gennie. Nice thing about those is that the transfer switch is simple, gennie or street. Since I don't have a single 240V load in the house, 18 kW@240VAC (derated for NG, or 75 amps for each 120VAC side of the panel) would give me all the juice I'd ever need (my street service is 100A). Depending on load the cost would be between $3/hour and $4/hour at our current NG price. Propane would run $6/hour to $9/hour. Gas would be over $20/hour. Someday I will have one.
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:52 pm

I know about those units - like I said, our small office has one, air-cooled 20kw Generac unit (which is enough). And yea, it is also rated at about 68 dBA, and I've heard it running many times. I would NOT want to sleep in the house next to such running generator, and I doubt our next-door neighbors would also like it :wink: I'd rather utilize a much less powerful gasoline generator, with better muffler, producing something like 58-64 dBA (depending on current load), with a built-in inverter producing pure sine wave output (if I need to use a PC). :P Not to mention the portables are easier to maintain and more reliable (if you forget to replace the starter battery in standby NG- powered generator when it's needed = you're screwed, unless you have a spare fully charged one or can use your car's battery or something).
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Re: Who else is getting ready for superstorm sandy!

Postposted on Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:02 pm

Gas generators at 58 dbA? Wish I could afford a Honda.
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