Have you ever been in a natural disaster?

United States
September 25, 2008 10:44am CST
If you've been in a natural disaster, what kind? How did you survive? How scared were you? Did you do anything heroic? If you haven't been in a natural disaster, what do you think the scariest one to be in would be?
2 people like this
6 responses
@goldeneagle (6776)
• United States
25 Sep 08
I have never actually been IN a natural disaster, but I was affected by Hurricanes Ivan and Dennis a few years ago. I live in Pensacola, where both made landfall. I came home the day after the storms, after having evacuated to my dad's place up in Georgia. There was no electricity or phones, no running water in some places, and the damage was terrible, especially after Ivan. I was able to return to work when I got back, so aside from dealing with traffic and the constant noise of generators and sirens and clean-up efforts, it wasn't really that bad. Not having electricity was the worst. My neighborhood was fortunate enough to still have the running water, so at least the toilets worked, but we had to use bottle water or had to purify water for cooking and drinking. Laundry was done the old fashioned way...outside in a couple of buckets by hand. As far as food went, the first few days weren't that bad for us. People were cooking whatever they had in their freezers as it thawed, and for most of us, the only way we had to cook was on a gas cooker or gas stove or grill. Some of us even built small fires and cooked on open flames, because there was PLENTY of oak wood lying around for the taking. So, the first few days were kind-of like a cookout, but after that, we started eating the canned stuff and some of the MRE's that the National Guard was handing out. Some of the MRE's were actually pretty good too. Some were just plain nasty, but anything is better than nothing, so if you happened to get one that wasn't the most tasty stuff in the world, you ate it anyway. LOL Slowly, but surely, life got back to normal as the recovery efforts progressed. Those of us who still had our homes were the lucky ones. It was those people who lost everything they owned, like my sister in law, who had the hardest time. Her family lost pretty much everything except the clothes they were wearing. I couldn't imagine having to start completely over like that. I am sure we would get through it, but I don't even want to think about having to do it. As for which disaster I think would be the scariest...I would have to say that an earthquake probably would be the worst. With hurricanes, you get some time to pack stuff up and board up your house and stuff, then leave if you want to. With tornadoes, as sudden as they may be, you sometimes get at least a little warning to take cover, especially with the news and stuff on radio and TV. An earthquake, however is TOTALLY sudden. Imagine standing there looking at something in a store or whatever, and having the world start to shake all of a sudden, maybe even causing the building you are in to collapse. I mean, with no warning at all, the floor seems to fall out from under you or stuff starts falling on you. I would have to say that would be the scariest thing...
• United States
25 Sep 08
Wow, that must have been downright horrible. My mom had to deal with hurricane Gustav that happened not too long ago, because she lives in Louisiana, I heard that it wasn't as bad as Ike though. I've never been in an earthquake, but I imagine it'd be pretty scary.
• United States
25 Sep 08
We all had our eye on Gustav and Ike as well. I know this sounds harsh, but I am glad someone else got it and not us...LOL I certainly do not wish that on anyone...but it had to go somewhere, and I was relieved when I saw that it was not coming here. We may get the next one, though, so I am not counting my blessings too soon. There is still a lot of hurricane season left, and there is always next year. It is not a matter of IF Pensacola is hit again, it is a matter of WHEN it is hit again and how bad... It is one of those things that is bitter-sweet...you are glad you didn't get it...but at the same time... you know someone else stands to lose everything. I feel bad for them. I hope your mom came through ok. Did she have any damage?
• United States
25 Sep 08
She had some flooding and a little wind damage, but other than that she's okay. She lives in northern Louisiana. I heard that almost everyone down in New Orleans evacuated though. I think it is only a matter of time before New Orleans gets hit too hard and bam. I hope that isn't the case though. Thanks for the response.
@fasttalker (2798)
• United States
25 Sep 08
The scariest to me would be a Hurricane. I hate storms and I was in what they called the tailend of a tornado once and let me tell you...if that was the tail I'd hate to see the front end. As heroic as I got was running faster than I ever had to get to a cellar. As I reached the cellar the door blew off of the stupid thing. You wanna talk scared...stand there and watch the door go flying above your head. I crawled into it anyway and let me tell you once again...Me, my husband and two kids in a neighbors (they weren't home) 10X10 cellar with no door! Now that's scary. Shew I didn't even need to relive that one!LOL Take care!
• United States
25 Sep 08
I'm so scared of tornadoes, I've only been close to one, and had the effects of it, it never hit my house. I don't know, it's just something about them, between hurricanes and tornadoes I believe hurricanes do more damage over a widespread area, but something about actually seeing a funnel cloud scares the wits out of me.
• United States
26 Sep 08
I'm right there with you...no wait I'm running for the cellar! LOL
• United States
25 Sep 08
The closest I've come to being actually involved or directly affected by a natural disaster was earlier this year. Where I lived got some pretty severe weather this particular night and we were placed under several tornado warnings. It all came to a point that night when the siren started going off. My parents and I eventually decided to go up to the courthouse for safety. There were a few other people there when we arrived. And by the time we did make it, the siren had gone off again. Ultimately, they had spotted seven tornadoes (well, I don't think they were technically tornadoes, but more funnel clouds or something) around my city but fortunately none touched ground. Fortunately none of them touched ground. Of course the recent hurricanes caused some bad weather around here and even sent a lot of evacuees up to my part of Mississippi.
• United States
25 Sep 08
I'm glad none of them touched ground. Imagine if all of them had. Seven tornadoes! That would have been horrible...eeeek..I'm scared of high winds. Even when there is just a severe thunderstorm in my area and I hear wind blowing the trees heavily I freak out. Thanks for responding.
@shana123 (2096)
• India
29 Sep 08
Hey CelebLot , Im basically a cold feeted fellow , so i myself get scared and make other scare a lot :) It was 4 years back and i was just 15 years of age , i got up early and was preparing for my exams i came to know there was slight tremor in our place , i got shivered and told my dad i dint feel it , he said i was sleeping.This tremor happened at 6.40 am then my parents left home to temple as they have planned before and at 8 am sharp i read the head lines that , sea water enetered a particular place in my state , i thought due to some geological changes few meters the water has come into the living place , after sometime people called the television centre and asked what was really happening around and there were big tides entering the whole city and sri lanka and Indonesia fully got washed up in the coast side part.They said whole lot of India's coastal region as well as Malaysia's part i guess all got washed up at 2 pm in the afternoon.I was freaked out to hear the news , they took the thing live and i could see the whole sea which is nearly more than 100 meters long entering into the city , many people got drowned and fisher man's home and houses near by washed away , my friend was planning to goto beach when she suddenly heard the news she was like GOD saved my life , seriously it was so .I kept crying , it was the only thing i can do as my parents were not at home , i know that temple was near coastal road but dont know exactly , even rumours came that our place was going to get sinked..but then it was all just rumour only.In the next day news we heard it was TSUNAMI! Thus how i reacted when disaster occured..
@chiaeugene (2226)
• China
26 Sep 08
my closest encoutner would be the wenchuan earthquale on 12 may 2008. i was in chongqing which is the province next to sichuan, a few hundred km away from the earthquake and the shake-up that day was a dayi would remmeber in my life. for the 1st time, i manage to experience what tremor is like and i cannot imagine those in the heart of it. i do not want to experience it again nor wish anyone would be in this position. it was so frightening that at that point in time, i really feel the force of mother nature and realised how insignificant we are as human being.
• United States
26 Sep 08
Back in February, there were a lot of tornadoes going through Tennessee. A couple tore up the area where i lived, and most of the deaths that happened in our county happened on the street my parents lived on. I didn't do anything heroic, but my parents, my uncle, and a friend of the family did. They went out in the middle of the storm to check on a couple that lived down the street. Their son called my parents house because he couldn't get a hold of his parents. My dad, uncle, and the friend went out to check on them and when they got there immediately they called my mom to get as many blankets as she could, some flashlights, and get there as fast as possible. Most of the houses in that strip were gone. She arrived to find that the woman had been killed, but the man was fighting for his life. He was covered in blankets and my mom sat with him til help arrived while the rest went looking for other survivors. To make a long story short, they saved the mans life. It was a tragic event, and i don't think anyone involved will ever be the same.