My wife and I live in southeast Louisiana in a town of approximately 70,000 people. We are located approximately 15 miles from downtown New Orleans. Interstate 10 runs through the middle of our town.
In 2008, I learned the hard way, that sometimes, “bugging in” is a much smarter than bugging out or evacuating from your home and stock piled supplies, especially if you are a Senior Citizen. This is a very difficult decision to make and should NOT be made lightly. Two main factors that should be part of your decision should be your physical condition and health situation.
As Hurricane Gustov approached southeast Louisiana, we were told that it was mandatory that we evacuate. The government told us that if we did not evacuate we could NOT expect ANY governmental services, police, fire, EMS or anything else for an unknown period of time. Also that the electricity would probably go out and that it would stay out for an undetermined amount of time before the electric lines could be repaired.
So almost a million people of southeast Louisiana evacuated, my wife and I included.
We left the security of our home. We left almost all of our supplies. We left almost everything, got in our two vehicles, which held a minimal amount of supplies and got on the Interstate 10 highway system early in the morning. We did what we were told to do. Then we sat in stop and go traffic for hours and hours not getting to our destination till late that night. It took us eight (8) hours to go twenty (20) miles. We found ALL of the interstate exits blocked for over 100 miles. There were NO bathroom facilities along the way. People were stopping their vehicles on the side of the interstate and urinating anywhere they could. Many vehicles ran out of gas or over heated. There was NO assistance for them. If you did not plan ahead, you did not have anything to eat or drink.
When we returned home, two days later, we found no damage to our home. We did not flood. The electricity was still on. We also found that many homes, luckily not ours, had been burglarized or as the police called it “Looted”.
Many Louisiana citizens decided, in their cars, that day, waiting for hours on the interstate that they would NOT evacuate ever again. Yes, I know we were lucky that nothing had happened to our home. However, we have been prepping for a very long time and had everything we needed to survive is in our home.
Would we have been better off staying at home where we had our supplies?
Would we have been better off staying at home where we could have defended our supplies and home in case someone came to “Loot” our belongings and supplies?
I am NOT advocating that you “Bug In”. That is a very personal decision that you must make with your family. However, I think you should very carefully consider the pros and cons of “Bugging In” or “Bugging Out”! DO NOT make this decision lightly. Also, DO NOT let someone else, other than your family; make the decision for you, such as the government. You know you capabilities and stored supplies.