This Could be the World’s Greatest Fear
This past Sunday a man died in China from the avian flu. Now . . . the man’s father has it. This raises SERIOUS concerns about precisely how the man’s father contracted the flu. Uh oh! Global pandemic here we come . . . perhaps. Anything is possible.
What would a pandemic bird flu outbreak look like? It’d be horrid. The world is a smaller place than it was during the 1918 pandemic flu outbreak. It’s estimated that the number of deaths from the 1918-1919 outbreak were on the order of 50 to 100 million. A wide range, I know, but the world wasn’t all that organized in tracking these things back then. Step forward nearly 90 years and project what it’d look like in today’s world – BAD. Not only has the population increased exponentially, but global travel is far more common. Take an outbreak in China, a few people hop on a plane and spend some time in a London airport infecting another twenty people, everyone boards different planes, wait a few days’ and it’s TEOTWAWKI time.
People would not be showing up for work. Hospitals would be overwhelmed. Truckers would not transport goods. Your local grocery stores would be wiped clean. There’d be a national state of emergency and FEMA would be in charge of helping the entire country. Given their response to the Katrina mess we know what to expect there. It’d be every man, woman and child for themselves. It’d be Shit Hits The Fan.
What’s equally if not more scary is the thought of a some terrorist group focusing on developing a deadly human-to-human strain of something awful. This is quite possibly a more likely scenario than a terrorist group acquiring nuke juice, and (in my opinion) a more scary one.
This then leads us to the question: What do we do to prepare? Well, let’s see what the government has to tell us. Ranger Man’s comments are in red.
To plan for a pandemic:
- Store a two week supply of water and food. During a pandemic, if you cannot get to a store, or if stores are out of supplies, it will be important for you to have extra supplies on hand. This can be useful in other types of emergencies, such as power outages and disasters. [Two weeks!? Try two MONTHS – minimum. If you’re thinking this would be under control in 2 weeks’ time you’re dreaming. Build your pantry and rotate stock.]
- Periodically check your regular prescription drugs to ensure a continuous supply in your home. [Solid advice that can’t be underscored enough. The LAST place you want to be during a bird flu outbreak is at the doctor’s office.]
- Have any nonprescription drugs and other health supplies on hand, including pain relievers, stomach remedies, cough and cold medicines, fluids with electrolytes, and vitamins. [I assume you already have a first aid kit you’ve built – right?]
- Talk with family members and loved ones about how they would be cared for if they got sick, or what will be needed to care for them in your home.
- Volunteer with local groups to prepare and assist with emergency response. [Only together, with our combined might, will we survive the post-apocalyptic world.]
- Get involved in your community as it works to prepare for an influenza pandemic. [Yeah, I’m sure every community is saying, “How will we prepare?” A few government agencies are, but you know how that’ll go.]
To limit the spread of germs and prevent infection:
- Teach your children to wash hands frequently with soap and water, and model the correct behavior. [Teach your children how to skin a buck and run a trout line.]
- Teach your children to cover coughs and sneezes with tissues, and be sure to model that behavior. [Teach your children to say “hey, listen” before they fart.]
- Teach your children to stay away from others as much as possible if they are sick. Stay home from work and school if sick. [Make sure you have ample sick time and/or cash reserves for an extended absence from work.]
The source goes on to describe items you should have at home, but the list is weak – real weak. See for yourself: http://www.pandemicflu.gov/plan/individual/checklist.html
News Article Source: http://www.moh.gov.cn/2.htm
What, can’t read Chinese? No, me neither. Go here: http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSSP21628720071207?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews&rpc=22&sp=true