Tuesday, October 4, 2011

SDS Daily Update for Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chemical Plants Do Blow Up

Yesterday's fire at a Texas chemical plant, which shut down I-35 and forced evacuations of neighborhoods, should serve as yet one more reason why we should be prepared.  And part of being prepared is a) knowing who your neighbors are and b) when their place blows up, is there anything in it that could harm me or my property?

Situational awareness remains a critical skill.  It's not enough to be on the lookout for people that can hurt you - we must focus on everything that can hurt us, through ill-intent or simply by accident.

And When Texas Isn't On Fire, It's....Well, These Days It's Always On Fire Somewhere

Another fire near Bastrop, Texas lit up this afternoon.  At the time of this blog, it had consumed over 800 acres.  Many people have been ordered to evacuate their homes ahead of the fire.

The wildfire danger will remain an ongoing one.  I think a lot of people thought it was a one weekend event.  Until we get a significant amount of rain, the threat will stay with us.

Those of you outside of Texas should learn from us.  Water management will continue to grow in importance in the coming years...some are calling water the next gold, for the reasons outlined in this article.  Mandatory water conservation will likely become a reality.

How does the Suburban Dad play this?  Three ways:

  • Move to water efficient appliances and fixtures.  We do that as old ones wear out.
  • Move landscaping to xeriscaping.  A lot of our neighbors are already doing that; I suspect we'll begin taking steps in that direction next year.
  • Install a rainwater harvesting system.  What little rain we get will be precious.  As I reported last week, my rainwater collection system continues to grow.  It doesn't take a lot of rain to yield a lot of water.
Back In The Left Seat

Tomorrow morning, I'm scheduled to end my nearly 28 month hiatus from the cockpit and return to the front left seat of an aircraft.  This time, I will be conducting a biennial flight review (BFR) in a rented Piper Arrow, which I am told will qualify me to fly all the other aircraft in this particular flight school's fleet. 

I've learned a lot about preparedness through my aviation studies.  We'll see how easily it comes back to me.

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