15 August 2023   |   by Greg   |   Blog

... or Survivalism

Over 200 tornadoes were reported during the 24 hour period of April 27 (7:00 am CDT) to April 28 (7:00 am CDT). 324 tornadic deaths were confirmed as a result of the outbreak, with as many as 238 in Alabama alone.

As I recall those events, I think how differently it would have been with the preparations I've made since then...
Hindsight is 20/20

As a result of the tornados, my town was without power for five days. During that time, gas stations could not pump gas. Many people lost all food that required refrigeration. This was the worst natural disaster that I have personally experienced.

The following year I had Generac natural gas generators installed at my home and office. The generators were the first step in preparing for a future disaster. Slowly, step by step, I realized I was making provision for other needs in a time of crisis.

The cyclone responsible for the historic tornado outbreak on April 27
NASA image courtesy the GOES Project Science team

My disaster preparedness began with small things, like a well stocked first aid kit, good quality flash lights, batteries and tools. However, I never considered myself a "Prepper." Proactively preparing for emergencies, such as weather or natural disasters, as well as other events like civil disruption or social disorder caused by political or economic crises is just smart.

Know what disasters and hazards could affect your area, how to get emergency alerts, and where you would go if you and your family need to evacuate.

Here are some resources from our federal government.

Some People Go To Extremes... How Do You Define These Preparanoids?

Some might say that my adding a Tesla (EV) to my garage is an example of extreme. Consider the following with an open mind for a moment. There is a finite amount of oil in the earth that can be harvested. At some point wells will begin drying up, one by one, until the obvious will become clear.

What kind of panic do you think will ensue? This may or may not happen in our lifetime, however, if it does, I have one advantage.

Truck with Internal Combustion Engine ICE
Author's Double-Cab 4WD Truck with Supercharger

My trusty Tacoma that gets about 16 mpg is still in my stable. There are times you need four-wheel drive or a truck and in those times, a car just won't do the job. Having a truck is a must. Having a vehicle that runs on gas and one that runs on electricity is simply hedging your bets.

What if you Lose Access to Gasoline & Natural Gas?
Midland 75-822 CB Radio

In that case, you're going to need a horse. It just so happens that the radio in the Tacoma is a Midland 75-822 40 Channel CB-Way Radio, which can be used as a mobile or handheld device. So, I could clip this one on my belt and away I go. If I had a horse, that is.

magnet mount citizens band antenna on the trunk of a Tesla Model 3
AM/FM Citizens Band Radio Antenna

The CB Radio was very popular in the 1970s. As the years went by, the radios seemed to lose their popularity. Today's radios have capabilities not avaible 50 years ago. The electric motor of my Tesla will cancel out any receive or transmit signal on the AM band. Luckily the FCC opened up the FM band to us in 2021.

The trunk deck-lid may perhaps be the only body part on the 2023 Tesla Model 3 that is not aluminum. This magnet mount antenna is the President Electronics New Virginia (Formerly Called New York UP) Magnetic Mount CB Radio Antenna.

The radio I have installed in the Tesla is an AM/FM Transceiver. There are 40 channels available on either band in addition to the 7 weather channels. I can use the AM channels when the car is not traveling. I can use the FM channels while the car is in motion or stationary.

President Bill II FCC Ultra-Compact AM/FM CB Radio

My radio is a President Electronics Bill II FCC Ultra-Compact AM/FM CB Radio. This is the first FCC approved AM/FM ultra-compact brought to the U.S. market. Benefits and features include: Scan Skip, Ultra-Compact CB radio, AM/FM, 7 Color Display, Scan, Filters: ANL built in, Noise Blanker, Noise Gate, and Compander, Key Beep, Roger Beep, Key Lock, Dual Watch, Monitor, Alert, 2 Programmable Emergency Channels, Weather Channels, VOX and more.

One of my favorite sayings is, "almost everything in life has a good side and a bad side." The bad side of transmitting in FM mode on a Citizens Band Radio, is that the higher quality audio will travel shorter distances than the AM mode signal.

One of the things I like best about the FM mode is less interference from skywave, skip or DX propagation. There are a couple of guys, one in New Orleans and one in south Texas that have powerful radios and nothing but time on their hands to listen to themselves talk.

The Unofficial Prepper CB Network is Channel 3 (AM 26.985 MHz)

In your preparation for a disaster, you may want to talk to others and exchange ideas. If the telephone land lines are down and the cell towers are down, these communication devices may be the last and only resort.

GMRS Radio
GMRS Radios may or may not use Repeaters

Just as cell phones rely on working towers, Ham Radios rely on Repeaters. An amateur radio repeater is an electronic device that receives a weak or low-level amateur radio signal and retransmits it at a higher level or higher power, so that the signal can cover longer distances without degradation.

Final Word...
Whether you prep a little or prepare a lot, have a plan in case disaster stikes. Always have your firearms secured, but accessible. Don't be a "Preparanoid." Use common sense and do not go overboard on any one aspect of preparing for a crisis. Be flexible.

Things to consider in your efforts to prepare for, respond to and recover from a disaster or crisis.

  • Stash some Cash
  • Food & Water
  • Backup Power
  • Fuel Sourcing & Delivery for Transportation
  • Communication
  • Gear, Tools & Supplies
  • Shelter In Place Plan
  • Bug Out (Evacuation) Plan

A "preparanoid" will convert cash to gold and hoard it. In my opinion, the gold will be more useless and worthless than the paper money. After all, you could start a fire with the paper. If the crisis is not so bad, your paper money will still be good. If the crisis is apocalyptic bad, your gold will be worthless.

September is National Preparedness Month

The Department of Homeland Security and FEMA websites are good sources of information related to preparing for disasters and emergencies. September is National Preparedness Month, an annual observance to remind all Americans how important it is for individuals, families, businesses and communities to be prepared for disasters and emergencies that can happen at any time.

Until next time, I'm Whiskey-Romeo-Yankee-Kilo-7-5-3 and I'm 10-7.


My MOS when I served in the United States Army was 76Y. For you non-military readers, the Military Occupational Specialty of 76 Yankee means that I was a Unit Armorer. While on REFORGER 85, I trained with German Paratroopers and qualified as "Expert" with the German G-3 rifle, the Israeli Uzi 9mm sub-machinegun and the 9mm handgun.