Friday, September 30, 2011

My new job and the Post-SHTF town.

So I started a new job 2 weeks ago.  In a nutshell, I am the supervisor in charge of the water distribution system and the sewer collection system.  This week, I'm helping out the power and gas crew with their meter reading.  It's a town of 800 homes, and I went to about 100 of them.  I don't judge what's in one's backyard, but I will notice.

The town is small, and the lots are smaller.  Many of the houses are well over 50 years old, adobe, and are on tiny lots of 25' by 100' and the people are mostly fourth and fifth generation Hispanics.  Nice folks, though.  Mostly farm jobs, harvesters, and other manual labor jobs.

I noticed:

  • Almost every house has a garden.  Mostly a few stalks of corn, and a few squash.
  • Almost 30% of homes had chickens of some sort.
  • Most houses have well used clothesline in the backyard.
  • Most yards are fenced in, and sometimes departmentalized for a dog.
  • The more run down and beat up the house/trailer was, the bigger and better the garden produced.
  • There was at least a dozen dogs that was barking the entire time I walked down the street.
  • These people took redneck engineering to a whole new level.  
For the most part, people looked stocked up with wood, their adobe houses were well insulated, and they were trying to produce their own food. However, the general upkeep of the city blocks made it look like year one post-SHTF.  

However, the city has no backup power for the lift stations for the sewer, so 24 hours after the power goes out, sewage will start to back up into houses.  Water is fed by a water tank, but once again, no backup power. Thank goodness I get to submit budget items and get the city prepared for... power outages.  It's like prepping for a 2,300 people at once.


  1. The residents seem to at least have a high dose of common sense. Stay observant. I know where every fruit tree is located in my neighborhood. Out at our BOL, all farm animals and gardens are cataloged, even the mules and horses.

  2. I was thinking the same as Stephen about the neighborhood having a common some common sense.

    Thanks, Stephen, for the comments about knowing where are the fruit trees are.

  3. AH and Matt: I would normally agree with you, but most of the citizens are so dirt poor they rely on a bunch of governmental handouts, and supplement the rest with gardens and chickens. Not that they aren't good people, just doing what they can in one of the poorest areas of the nation.

  4. Sounds like these people at least try and provide some of their own food.

  5. Mudbug - where you bin hiding? i bin leaving you taunts and such on a variety of blogs???

    anyway - good eye on keeping on the sitrep on this town...and observe EVERYTHING as Stephen and Matt said...get some graph paper and mark it all down - that's what i have done here but it is actually pretty easy to do here!

    i got nothing much else to say except get prepping for that 2,'s in your very capable hands, monsieur, and that is some very beautiful music to my ears!

    your friend,

  6. kymber, I am pushing to help the town prep their water and sewer systems. However, when the SHTF, I will leave them with a Emergency Operation Plan, but since I live 30 miles away, they are on their own. But arming them with info and prep ability, I won't worry about a brass horde coming from there.

    And the wife already has "rented" out the loft to our good friends who are trying to prep and have the same mindset, but need a place with water out in the boonies. They come over all the time and would fill in a few gaps in our location.

  7. Mudbug, you could use your new job as a great source of information for your blog. You could tell us what they have done wrong/right and what could be changed in your honest option.

  8. kymber and Rob,

    I will accept your challenge.

  9. Sounds like that town is lucky to have you. You can get them squared away and when they need the things you have provided, those systems will be in place. That is, if they don't lay you off first for unnecessary expenditures! Remember, no good deed goes unpunished.