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#218310 - 03/03/11 12:39 PM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: scrounger]
Dagny Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/25/08
Posts: 1916
Loc: Washington, DC

Welcome to ETS, Sealander. Thank you very much for your keen insights into living through a catastrophe. For all my research I will not presume to be able to know what the reality of such a situation would be like. I lived in Los Angeles for a decade but was never at the epicenter of a major quake.

How are your neighbors doing? Are frayed nerves causing problems?

How long were you without power?

Continued best wishes and condolences to you and your community. I'm still checking in on the NZ Herald everyday.

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#218327 - 03/03/11 05:36 PM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: sealander]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
Very good post, Sealander!

Just a thought on the hot water cylinder... could you have cut into the pipe between the water source and the tank to let air in so the contents could drain into containers?

"Emergency toileting - gotta work on that one, having a backyard overlooked by the neighbours is not helpful."

Are you familiar with the online book Humanure Handbook by Joseph Jenkins? It deals with exactly that kind of situation, and is cheap, simple and safe.

Re: the solar camping shower. I saw this in a campground and thought it was absolutely brilliant! Make an outdoor shower stall by hanging a common kid's hula hoop from any overhead support using three evenly-spaced cords or wire. Use the usual rings to hang a couple of shower curtains from the hula hoop. The people I saw using this were keeping the curtain edges closed in the breeze with clothespins.

I'm glad you're doing so well. I was wondering how much the people there were into preparedness.

Sue

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#218348 - 03/03/11 08:21 PM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: Dagny]
sealander Offline
Stranger

Registered: 09/20/10
Posts: 15
Loc: New Zealand
Dagny, the neighbors we were on chatting terms with pre-earthquake are doing ok. Can't say for the rest as a natural disaster is apparently not enough to make them sociable smile
The police say domestic violence incidents are up 50% so yes, much of the population is somewhat stressed.
The house next door already needed to be repiled as a result of the September quake so I would expect that it is damaged further. One further down the street also already had some bad foundation damage and is much worse now but the tenants are staying put as it is impossible to find another rental property, and they still have their jobs.

At least 70,000 people have left the city so far. Many of them will return if their jobs are still available - 50,000 people worked in the inner city area that is currently cordoned off, and businesses are already trying to relocate if they can, or are working out of employee's houses.

I live on the south side of town, a few blocks from the cordoned off inner city area. We got power back on within 12 hours. Some eastern suburbs still have no electricity because the power lines ran underground there and soil liquefaction has caused serious damage to the underground infrastructure. Basically they fixed the easy stuff first, and anything else is going to take a lot longer.

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#218349 - 03/03/11 08:41 PM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: Susan]
sealander Offline
Stranger

Registered: 09/20/10
Posts: 15
Loc: New Zealand
Susan, the hot water cylinder is way up in the roof space and very difficult to access, so no way I'm going up there while the house is still jumping around. I expect there is a way to drain it manually, but we weren't so desperate for water that we were going to mess with it. I'll will have a word with our plumber at some stage and find out what is the correct way to drain it - I've yet to receive his bill for installing it as the post has only just started up again smile
Very glad I insisted he fit seismic restraints so it didn't come through the ceiling.

Yes, I have heard of the Humanure Handbook though I've yet to read it.

I do like that idea of using a hula hoop to suspend a shower curtain from, that is clever. I would have rigged something up with tarpaulins if we'd needed a long term solution. As it was we used a bucket for urine and a plastic bag for everything else. I would have just used a lidded bucket inside and buried the waste in the garden, but we couldn't spare the water to wash the bucket out and I figure that would get pretty stinky if you don't have any odor neutralising material available.

As for folks being into preparedness, well I guess they're like people everywhere and despite regular public service messages exhorting you to be prepared to take care of yourself in an emergency there always seem to be people who ignore this. And of course there are plenty of people especially on the east side of town who are struggling to live from day to day anyway, so they have difficulty purchasing anything in addition to their day to day needs. That is what I saw when working in an evacuation centre last September - the people we got there were the ones who didn't have more than a few days of food in the house anytime, or who didn't have family support networks. Anyone who had friends or family who could take them in went there, and anyone with the financial resources to get themselves out of the city for a while packed up and went.

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#218370 - 03/04/11 01:21 AM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: sealander]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
"Susan, the hot water cylinder is way up in the roof space and very difficult to access..."

Yes, I understand that, but where does the water come from BEFORE it goes into the tank? Is it piped in from underground, where the pipe might be reachable with your feet on the ground?

Sue

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#218374 - 03/04/11 02:03 AM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: Susan]
sealander Offline
Stranger

Registered: 09/20/10
Posts: 15
Loc: New Zealand
I would say the mains water pipe comes in underground from the street, goes under the house, then up through the walls to the roof.

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#218387 - 03/04/11 08:14 AM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: sealander]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Welcome to ETS Sealander and thanks for sharing your experiences. For keeping portable toilets less stinky you could try using small animal bedding from the pet store(pine/cedar wood shavings), sawdust, cat litter, fire ash, peat moss, etc. I used to keep cat litter for just such a purpose but switched to small animal bedding due to weight. Good luck and stay safe.

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#218395 - 03/04/11 03:14 PM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: LED]
hikermor Online   content
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6693
Loc: southern Cal
A sprinkling of lime on the pile will also sweeten things up.
_________________________
Geezer in Chief

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#218439 - 03/05/11 10:35 AM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: sealander]
Brangdon Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/12/04
Posts: 1201
Loc: Nottingham, UK
Originally Posted By: sealander
1. Storing 3 days supply of water is not enough. Even reserving it for drinking, we seemed to go through it faster than expected.
Good first post. Can you say more about how much water you used, and what for?
_________________________
Quality is addictive.

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#218458 - 03/05/11 08:12 PM Re: New Zealand : 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch. [Re: sealander]
Stu Offline
I am not a P.P.o.W.
Old Hand

Registered: 05/16/05
Posts: 1058
Loc: Finger Lakes of NY State
Welcome and thanks for your comments! smile
_________________________
Our most important survival tool is our brain, and for many, that tool is way underused! SBRaider
Head Cat Herder

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