China’s 2019 Novel Coronavirus: Don’t Panic, Prep!
China’s 2019 Novel Coronavirus: Don’t Panic, Prep!
If you’ve been paying even a smidgen of attention to the coronavirus that’s spreading across China, and minimally, for now, into other countries, you know that the information coming from communist China does not reflect reality. The virus is said to have an incubation rate of up to 14 days and, more alarmingly, it can reportedly be spread by people who are asymptomatic. So the steps China is taking—locking down massive cities, closing every theater across the country, banning Uber-like ride share services, for example—will have precisely zero effect on containing the spread of the virus (not to mention, it’s been around since at least last December). About five million people were allowed to leave the, allegedly, ground-zero city of Wuhan itself before authorities locked down the city. Did some of them carry the coronavirus with them? Probably. Have they traveled out of the country? Who knows. So couple that with what we’re told is a virus transmittable to other people before its host even coughs, and anyone with a couple of functional brain cells can see that controlling the virus is a losing battle that’s far past its due date:
Let's be serious: they're not going to be able to control this
(from South China Morning Post) pic.twitter.com/QfiQ7a3uFF
— Steve Lookner (@lookner) January 28, 2020
UPDATE: U.S. State Department now tells @cbsnews planned charter flight to evacuate American citizens from Wuhan, China will land in *Ontario, California* east of Los Angeles. Passengers to pay back cost of flight and subject to “CDC screening, health monitoring and observation.” https://t.co/8sJ3z7Rzko
— Ramy Inocencio 英若明 (@RamyInocencio) January 27, 2020
So with that: let’s not panic; let’s prep. So here’s a list of practical, common-sense things we can do, and stock in our homes, to keep ourselves and our families as safe as possible, should this thing (or anything for that matter) manage to find its way here in greater numbers than we currently have (and I think that’s a given; see the previous paragraph if your attention span is as short as mine):
Don’t travel. Especially to China. Now, I’m not so naïve as to think that people can just stop traveling, particularly if it’s part of your job. But if you must, and it’s by commercial airline, train, bus, whatever, make sure to have lots of hand sanitizer, keep your hands OFF your face, wash your hands frequently, and, if you’re unconcerned about people looking at you weird…
…Get a mask. No, not a Halloween mask, silly. One of these, N95 or better, for every member of your household. (Hint: some of those little paper masks we see lots of folks wearing…are basically worthless. Just as are airport staffers taking temperatures of people traveling. Infected people may have no fever. It’s feel-good, we communists got this, propaganda.)
Speaking of airports: don’t hang out with large groups of people. Now I know that’s tough to do, especially for our kids who attend schools that could double as petri dishes for their science experiments. But avoid what you can, and again, have that sanitizer with you, wash your hands, and make sure your kids do too, and that they understand the importance of it.
Gloves. These go with your super-sexy respirator masks.
Eye protection: goggles, face shields, or safety glasses. You really, really don’t want someone sneezing, coughing, hacking up a lung into your eye, and thereby infecting you. Plus they look great with the masks and gloves. Two-fer.
See? Cute, right?
Clean room suits. They complete the outfit for the fashion-conscious among us. And for those of us who are all about function, well, coupled with the aforementioned mask, gloves, and eyewear, they function to keep you safer from invading viruses, and anyone in your home who may be sick with one.
Thick-ply plastic sheeting, duct tape, a trash bin, and heavy-duty biohazard liners to create a quarantine room. Now it’s highly unlikely that you’ll ever need to create a sick room for a member of your household, but it’s better to have the items on hand—cheap and easy to find—just in case. Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to build one.
Water. Get lots of it. Or have access to it. Some of us have wells; but many of us don’t. So have lots of bottled water on hand. You can even fill empty milk jugs, etc and store those.
Food. MREs are readily available. I bought a few of them, at relatively low expense, on eBay years ago. Make sure to check them periodically as they do expire eventually. You can also purchase food kits from companies like these, or simply buy bulk, freeze-dried items at your local grocery store each time you shop. Many can be stored literally for decades.
Extra prescription meds, over-the-counter medicines, and a fully-stocked first-aid kit. This particular coronavirus causes a nasty case of pneumonia. As a child, I was hospitalized with it many times, and as an adult with the walking type. So I know how difficult it is to shake. And breathe. And if you have an underlying illness—say, asthma—it’s crucial that you have extra supplies of your necessary meds on hand. I can all but guarantee that when the shit hits the fan, you won’t find what you need.
Heating source. Have a wood or pellet stove? Make sure you have extra fuel for it.
A generator. Now I realize that they need fuel, which may be tough to come by in a zombie apocalypse, and that they’re not cheap. But in an emergency, you’ll thank me. We had a power outage a couple of years ago that lasted several days, in below-freezing temps. Along with our wood stove, stored food, and our generator, we had Christmas lights on in our rear yard while the rest of the neighborhood was pitch black and sitting around their one candle.
Batteries. Double-A, triple-A, Cs, Ds, and portable chargers for your cell phones. Have a bunch of all of them.
Candles. Have more than one. They tend to, you know, diminish when you use them.
Battery/solar-powered radio, similar to this one.
Guns and ammo. Hey, it’ll give you an excuse to go buy more (like you needed one!)
A bug-out-bag for each member of your household. You can find a comprehensive list of what you might include in it here.
So what are you waiting for? Go get prepped.
Now you’ll excuse me while I go and take my own advice and finish up my prep list (and if I’ve left anything out, please tell us in the comments!). Because…this coronavirus isn’t receding (there are flights still arriving in the United States from various cities in China; no problem, right?). In fact, the numbers of infected are growing significantly…
BREAKING: Epicenter of coronavirus outbreak reports 1,291 new cases and 24 new deaths, raising death toll to 106 https://t.co/XQhLD5wMuG
— BNO Newsroom (@BNODesk) January 28, 2020
… because math, and you can bet they’ll continue to climb. So, as they say, better safe than sorry.