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#202645 - 05/29/10 05:30 PM Relationships for Survival
Jesselp Offline
What's Next?
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/19/07
Posts: 263
Loc: New York
So, yesterday afternoon, I get a frantic call from my wife - my 2-year old younger son had managed to lock himself inside an empty room in our new home, and she could not get him out. After suggesting a variety of ways she might open the door (she was not amused when I suggested kicking it in!), none of which worked, she told me to call a locksmith.

After hanging up the phone, I realized that a locksmith would take a while, and cost lots of money. Being an EMT on the rescue squad, I know the local fire chief quite well, so I called him. I know know he keeps a halligan tool in his car that would get him past the door quickly without too much damage.

Unfortunately, he was out of the village at the time. He did, however, give me the cell phone number of the police officer on patrol in the village, whom I also know pretty well. He stopped by the house and had my son freed within about five minutes of the call.

It occurred to me, that in addition to any skills and equipment that I might have accumulated over the years, it is the relationships with people like these, people nearby who are willing to lend a hand when things get tough, that will add a lot to my ability to survive whatever emergencies might come my way. If the power goes out, we'll all help each other. If someone is hurt or sick, we all come running.

Anyhow, I think that our relationships can be equally important to our survival during a crisis as our gear, and this small incident reinforced that. Going it alone is never the first option.
_________________________
http://spligovia.blogspot.com
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in and around New York

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#202654 - 05/30/10 01:01 AM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: Jesselp]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Nobody can know it all. Nobody can do it all. There is a very good reason that humans are social animals; the ones that couldn't get along with others, compromise, and work in a group died out.

It is good to have a wide diversity of friends with a wide diversity of skills, talents, points of view, knowledge. You never know what might make a difference.

People need to remember that you survive to get back to society. To return to the relative safety of the fold. It is good to get away from people for a time. But you always come back. Often with a renewed appreciation for how good life can be withing a social order and contract.

For future reference: Most interior privacy lock sets have a simple way of disengaging the lock from the other side designed in to handle just that sort of situation. Privacy locks are just there to keep people from inadvertently walking in. With a few easy step, and sometimes a few common tools, they are easy to defeat.

Look closely at the doorknob often there is a hole or what looks like a key slot in the middle. If it is a slot you can usually release the lock by inserting a screwdriver and twisting. If it is a hole the usual method is to insert a stiff piece of wire and thrust it until you hit a latch that releases the lock. Wire from a coat hanger, straightened with pliers, is usually stiff enough. Sometimes the hole you put the wire in is not actually on the knob but near it.

Failing that it is often easy to insert a knife blade and to use the edge to work the bolt out of the striker so the door will open. If the door opens opposite the side you're on it often helps to pry the jamb away from the frame and to work the bolt back by by working between the jamb and the frame.

If the door opens toward the side your on removing the hinge pins should allow you to take the door off the hinges and gain access that way.

Some privacy locks can be released by simply twisting the handle one way, pushing on the door to stop the bolt from sliding back into the striker and repeating the other way.

If a child gets locked in it is best to calm them down, reassure them everything is okay and that they are not in trouble, get them to wipe their hands so they aren't sweaty from panic, then get them to try to turn the handle with both hands. Most privacy locks disengage if the lock-side handle is turned.

It is a good idea for every family to have a short pry-bar or large flat-blade screwdriver to handle prying and wedging jobs. Interior doors are typically light-weight and easy to force once you know how and have done it a few times.

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#202683 - 05/30/10 08:23 AM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: Art_in_FL]
MDinana Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/08/07
Posts: 2196
Loc: Beer&Cheese country
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL


If a child gets locked in it is best to calm them down, reassure them everything is okay and that they are not in trouble, get them to wipe their hands so they aren't sweaty from panic, then get them to try to turn the handle with both hands. Most privacy locks disengage if the lock-side handle is turned.



And, apparently, your wife. Who somehow managed to dump the responsibility of calling a locksmith onto you, even though she was the one at home with your child at the time.


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#202704 - 05/30/10 07:36 PM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: MDinana]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Quote:
And, apparently, your wife. Who somehow managed to dump the responsibility of calling a locksmith onto you, even though she was the one at home with your child at the time.


One has to hope that the adults would remain calm, and clearheaded enough to deal creatively with the situation. I'm always amazed at how so often dealing with emergencies large and small comes down to: Don't Panic.

She didn't do as bad as many others. She had the insight to recognize that she didn't know what to do and the fortitude to get help. Crazy as it seems there have been cases where the person just walked away, sat in a corner in a near catatonic state, or got drunk. This type of call is usually a regular event for most fire departments. Once called most fire departments will come and get the kid out. An easy feel-good call for a underemployed small department. An annoying nuisances for busy larger ones. But generally they do come.

They might use on of these to save time:
http://www.thefirestore.com/store/product.cfm/pid_1177_6_shove_knife/


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#202712 - 05/30/10 11:30 PM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: Art_in_FL]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Our interior doors all have the screw slot to open from the other side if say a toddler locks themselves in.
_________________________
Don't just survive. Thrive.

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#202716 - 05/31/10 12:03 AM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: comms]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Originally Posted By: comms
Our interior doors all have the screw slot to open from the other side if say a toddler locks themselves in.


Most privacy locks are easy to get through once you know the secret of that particular lock type. IMHO every renter and homeowner should take the time to familiarize themselves with the locks in their home and how to bypass the privacy locks.

Even if you don't have kids. You never know when kids might visit and, of course, older folks can have difficulties. In one case I'm familiar with an elderly gentleman had a seizure and the fact that someone was able to bypass the privacy lock in seconds saved time and avoided the need to damage the door. As it was it also avoided injuring him because his head was in the swing of the door.

It is really easy to figure out and practice when your not under pressure and have access to both sides of the door.

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#202718 - 05/31/10 12:48 AM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: Art_in_FL]
MDinana Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/08/07
Posts: 2196
Loc: Beer&Cheese country
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL
Quote:
And, apparently, your wife. Who somehow managed to dump the responsibility of calling a locksmith onto you, even though she was the one at home with your child at the time.


One has to hope that the adults would remain calm, and clearheaded enough to deal creatively with the situation. I'm always amazed at how so often dealing with emergencies large and small comes down to: Don't Panic.

She didn't do as bad as many others. She had the insight to recognize that she didn't know what to do and the fortitude to get help. Crazy as it seems there have been cases where the person just walked away, sat in a corner in a near catatonic state, or got drunk. This type of call is usually a regular event for most fire departments. Once called most fire departments will come and get the kid out. An easy feel-good call for a underemployed small department. An annoying nuisances for busy larger ones. But generally they do come.

They might use on of these to save time:
http://www.thefirestore.com/store/product.cfm/pid_1177_6_shove_knife/


Very true. While I don't think the OP meant it that way, "relationships" definitely include the familial and marital types! Can you imagine bugging out with the [insert spouse here] nagging the entire way, or not helping with gas pumping, or something else?

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#202726 - 05/31/10 07:03 AM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: MDinana]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
Originally Posted By: MDinana
Originally Posted By: Art_in_FL


If a child gets locked in it is best to calm them down, reassure them everything is okay and that they are not in trouble, get them to wipe their hands so they aren't sweaty from panic, then get them to try to turn the handle with both hands. Most privacy locks disengage if the lock-side handle is turned.



And, apparently, your wife. Who somehow managed to dump the responsibility of calling a locksmith onto you, even though she was the one at home with your child at the time.



I disagree - that is a healthy division of labor. The one at home can devote 100% attention to calming the child, the one away can deal with whatever needs to be done on the phone.


When things get ugly and you can't think straight it is very good advice to call for help. Ever tried thinking when your kid is wailing in panic? (Not pain, not discomfort or "I need attention", but sheer terror and panic?) Not easy, I can tell you that. A calm, reassuring voice of reason on the phone is really good help in getting a grip and finding the right solution.


I had my wife on the phone in exactly the same situation. We were also new to the town and the apartment, didn't know any neighbors or anything. Luckily I had to fix some similar lock just days ago, so I knew exactly how to take it apart and I knew exactly where I put the tools. I could give her pretty detailed instructions (flat screwdriver THERE, have a go at those two screws there, now just put whatever into that key slot and twist). Problem solved in less than 2 minutes.

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#202731 - 05/31/10 02:19 PM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: Jesselp]
Glock-A-Roo Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 1076
Originally Posted By: Jesselp
It occurred to me, that in addition to any skills and equipment that I might have accumulated over the years, it is the relationships with people like these, people nearby who are willing to lend a hand when things get tough, that will add a lot to my ability to survive whatever emergencies might come my way...

Anyhow, I think that our relationships can be equally important to our survival during a crisis as our gear...


Concur 100% on relationships. The priority list for any crisis is:

1) mindset (includes attitude & relationships)
2) tactics (can also include relationships)
3) skill
4) gear

Problem is, it's a lot easier to buy gear (& talk about it on the internet) than do the hard & sometimes humbling work of developing mindset, tactics and skill.

IMO this is why you see so many fat guys at the range bragging about their latest handgun, when losing 50 lbs would go much farther to improve their personal security and lifespan than any gun.

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#202734 - 05/31/10 03:53 PM Re: Relationships for Survival [Re: Glock-A-Roo]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
Never underestimate the willingness of people to help if asked. Many people are shy about asking for help for fear of rejection or it becoming common knowledge out that you might need help. But the fear is largely unfounded. Off the top of my head I can think of a couple of dozen cases where a friend was helped by a stranger or I helped someone I didn't know, or where a stranger helped me. Thinking hard I can't come up with but one case where someone was asked and they didn't help. And that was for a very good reason.

Giving or getting assistance is also a good way of starting off a friendship and/or forming up a loose mutual aid relationship.

Quote:
IMO this is why you see so many fat guys at the range bragging about their latest handgun, when losing 50 lbs would go much farther to improve their personal security and lifespan than any gun.


IMHO a lot of gear gets bought, a lot food gets eaten, a lot of alcohol gets consumed as people seek to compensate for feelings and situations they can't bear to confront directly. Guns in particular have a cache of power, control, potency that is often used as comfort and compensation for the grind and disappointments of modern life. While guns are useful tools, and sometimes a source of community, with people getting together to socialize and for mutual support in a common interest, all too often they end up being isolating and solitary activities.

To me the psychological/sociological aspects of survival/preparation/survivalism are far more interesting than the minutia of gear and supplies.

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