Thursday, October 16, 2014

More Ebola, Hurrican Season Continues, and Processing the Harvest

I was concerned last week when I heard of a nurse who had cared for Thomas Duncan has tested positive for the Ebola virus.  Unfortunately, my concerns were well placed, as we now have learned of a second nurse with Ebola.  I have not yet found any information regarding how she contracted it though...was she also in direct contact with the original patient or did she contract it some other way, such as in a nurses' lounge or a washroom?
Either way, there were some very disturbing errors in her conduct.  It seems that she was smart enough to self examine for symptoms, yet upon developing a slight fever, was NOT smart enough to avoid air travel, exposing 130 pasengers on a flight from Ohio to Texas to the possibility of contracting the virus, not to mention the flight crew, who could soon be developing symptoms while away at work almost anywhere in the world.
Only time will tell where this is going to pop up next.  In fact, after having passed away on Oct. 8th, we may not have heard the end of people contracting the virus from him until about Oct.29th, the 21 day possible incubation period.  But now, that time clock keeps resetting itself.  The latest case means that we won't know the extent of possible infections from her until Nov.3rd.  Every new case discovered resets the time clock to 3 weeks before we know the extent of the consequences.
Now that we know for sure that a patient was infectious while on board a commercial flight, I think it is only a matter of time before we see a case here in Canada.  Now, I'm not trying to sound any alarms just yet, and hopefully I will never have to use this space to report how many thousands of cases been reported on home soil, but I do think that now is the time to review your pandemic preparedness and plans.

With all the crazy goings on in the world, It's easy to lose track of the dangers that do come along on a regular basis.  Right now, many of us have our attention focused on other events, that October 30th, 2014 isn't even a blip in our brains.  What's that date all about you ask?  That is the day that Hurricane Sandy made landfall in the New York, New Jersey area.  Yes, that's right, we are still in Hurricane season, and as I write this, the Canadian Hurricane Center (Ya, we have that) is tracking a category 4 storm named Gonzales, which is set to affect the maritimes sometime Saturday or Sunday.
While this particular storm is NOT expected to hit landfall in a significant way like Sandy, it is a reminder that we can't rule out Hurricanes as many of us are hurriedly getting ready for the snow to fly.

Also, here we are in the height of the fall harvest.  As a matter of fact, instead of writting this post, I myself should be busy processing and preserving the 25lbs of cabbage, 50 lbs of apples, 10 lbs of beets, and untold amounts of pumpkin and squash I have sitting in my cold room.
In the next few days and weeks, many of us will be using up copious amounts of salt, sugar, vinegar, and water in our canners and crocks, placing roots and such in their winter storage cellars, and putting up every last ounce of food that we can.

While we do all of this and keep an eye out for all the bad things that the world has to offer right now, don't forget that winter is coming, so get that car kit winterized, plan for your snow tires to be changed, and get your alternative heating ready to go!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Movie Monday - Prepper Bartering - What to Barter After SHTF

This Week On Movie Monday

Che, from the Ontario Preppers Survival Network is a major contributor to the preparedness community not only in Ontario, but across the country. Every summer, Che hosts the Ontario Preppers Annual Meetup, where a multitude of leaders in the preparedness community gather to share their knowledge. Che himself is an experienced leader, and at the last event gave a presentation called
Prepper Bartering - What to Barter After SHTF. He has graciously given the CPN permission to air this presentation as a part of Movie Mondays.

Don't forget to visit Che's site, the Ontario Prepper Survival Network
And also check out his YouTube Channel
If you want more information about the annual meet, visit Ontario Prepper & Self Reliance Meet

This film is presented with the express permission of

Friday, October 10, 2014

Ebola. To fear or not to fear?

Twitter is tweeting and the news is buzzing with anything to do with Ebola. It’s a genuine fear about a deadly disease that mutates quickly and has no known cure.

A Harvard poll conducted in August, before the United States’ first case of Ebola entered the country, found that 4 in 10 Americans are worried about a major Ebola outbreak. If a poll were taken here in Canada, similar results would be likely.

Does the threat of Ebola have you worried?

Do you think Canada is ready should Ebola make its way here?

It appears with the unknown comes a variety of opinions about how it will affect us. What do you think?  Does it concern you enough to take extra precautionary measures?

On October 6th, Global News reported 5 reasons why Canada is highly unlikely to be struck with Ebola. 

1)     In Canada, there is trust in medical officials – There is some mistrust of modern medicine and hospitals in Africa. Those seeking alternate means for a cure increase the risk of more people being infected.

2)     There are cultural differences - Burial rituals that involve washing and kissing the body increase the risk of exposure.  We do not have the same rituals here.

3)     There is action taken with suspected cases – Canada’s hospitals, government, agencies and the media communicate together to get the word out.  Africa doesn’t have the same infrastructure.

4)     Our health care system is prepared for potential cases – Protocol changed dramatically in North America after the SARS epidemic. Systems are now in place to monitor and educate the public when emergencies arise. Getting the word out is more difficult in Africa; a disease spreads quickly before health organizations can education the population about safe practices.

5)     Canada is sending resources to West Africa - On Saturday, Canada announced it is sending a second team with a mobile laboratory to West Africa.

Here are some other reasons it is thought Canada is a low-risk country:

-        CTV news reports that next week Canada is sending an experimental Ebola vaccine to the World Health Organization for future trials and use. Canada’s involvement means accessibility to preventative measures.
-        6 airports are now screening passengers in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Halifax, Ottawa and Calgary. The US announced that airports in New York, Washington, Newark, Chicago, and Atlanta will be providing screening as well. 
-        Canada gets few visitors from the most infected countries

Do you agree?

CTV News reports  that despite the many beliefs that the risk is low of Ebola coming to Canada, others say it is just a matter of time.

-        Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person in the United States diagnosed with Ebola, felt fine when he entered the United States. Even had the airport screening been in effect at that time, his illness would not have been detected.
-        Others say that unless all air travel is banned from Africa, then an automatic quarantine period of 21 days should be enacted for all those who travel between the two countries regardless of how they feel.

The reality is, we really do not know what is going to happen, and it is when we feel out of control that we feel fear towards a situation. The best solution is to be prepared, at all times, for any kind of natural disaster, epidemic or unforeseen circumstance. We can live in fear, or we can prepare ourselves and have confidence knowing we can at least take care of ourselves and our loved ones. In addition to having sufficient food, water, tools and emergency kits on hand, make sure you add extra masks, gowns, eye protection and gloves to your supply. When there is no cure for an illness, preparedness and being informed are your best tools for staying alive.

Our hearts go out to all those around the world who are struggling with this disease. We hope a cure is found soon and that the suffering and fear will be over. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Twitter and the news were flooded with stories of people beating this cruel disease.  We can only hope.

Total Prepare Inc, is a Canadian Emergency Preparedness company that gives peace of mind solutions for troubling times.