Since Hurricane Katrina, we have been working with American families after natural disasters to help them rebuild and reestablish their lives. In each disaster hundreds and thousands of families lose everything and are forced to start their lives over from scratch. We are often the first on the ground providing relief when it is most critical. It is one of the reasons we have consistently been ranked as “the most efficient large charity in the United States” by Forbes Magazine.
Rebuilding after natural disasters is a long and complicated process filled with set backs, confusion and frustration. Even a small amount of preparation can save time, headaches and even lives. That is why we have created a 54-page guide, filled with tips, tricks and techniques for preparing your family in the event of a natural disasters. This will guide you through basic first-aid, disaster specific preparations (earthquake, hurricane and more) and what you will need to work with insurance companies and FEMA for recovery grants and low/no interest loans.
This book is filled with information that we have compiled from our experiences, work with government agencies and survivors of natural disasters.
Roy St. John
Gleaning Disaster Response Coordinator
Here are a few facts to consider about natural disasters.
Of all the violent weather associated with hurricanes, storm surges caused by the massive sustained winds have the most damaging effects. Records have placed storm surges as high as 35 feet above normal water levels.
You read about less than 1% of earthquakes. Annually, there are more than 500,000 earthquakes around the world. Only 20% of those can be felt and .02% (100) cause any damage.
Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States and 20% of the flooding damage happens in low to moderate risk areas. Flooding is also NOT generally covered in home owners insurance.
Over 1/3 of cat and dog owners don’t have a disaster preparedness plan in place for their animals.
The fastest wind speeds on Earth are thought to occur inside of tornadoes. It is extremely difficult to record but wind speeds of 318 mph have been recorded.
We know there is a “tornado alley” across the Mid-West United States. There is also a “blizzard alley” as well. In reviewing of 40 years of data, the Dakotas, Minnesota to Iowa and Colorado is more likely to get hit with a blizzard than the rest of the US.
Thunderstorms are common but few realize how powerful they are. The average thunderstorm puts off as much energy as an atomic bomb.
The US electric grid is vulnerable to terrorist and hacker attacks. It would only take a few strategic individuals to knock out power to millions of Americans for more than a week.
Wildfires consume areas of land each year larger than major U.S. metropolitan areas. “Crown fires” are spread by wind moving quickly across the tops of trees. “Running crown fires” are even more dangerous because they burn extremely hot, travel rapidly, and can change direction quickly.
The biggest tsunami ever recorded was the mega-tsunami of 1958 in Litya Bay, Alaska. The waves from the tsunami reached as high as 1,720 feet, roughly the size of the Empire State Building. It took less than 7 minutes from start to finish. Rogue waves are often confused for tsunamis. A rogue wave is one large scale wave (sometimes 100 feet high) that can cause damage as the shoreline. Tsunamis are often described as a wall of water sometimes over a mile long. Tsunamis can travel sometimes as far as 60 miles inland.