Letter: Observations on the Fires in Canada

Hugh,

I wanted to comment on the article about the folks fleeing the wildfires in Fort McMurray, Canada. I saw some classic SurvivalBlog themes in there:

  1. Keep your gas tanks full. The gas station owner noted that people were “fighting each other to get gas, growing more and more desperate as the afternoon wore on.”
  2. Keep your gas tanks full, (yes I’m repeating myself). Later on the writer notes people were abandoning their cars on the highway since they knew they wouldn’t have enough fuel to make it to their destination.
  3. Don’t be a refugee. The folks that went to the camps not only were now at the whim of the government, but the same government that sent them there now had to try and get them out of there since it was no longer safe.
  4. Keep your head about you and use common sense. The writer correctly observed that the fire would head north and therefore he headed south, out of harm’s way. Kudos to them.
  5. Don’t trust the government to give you good advice, particularly low level police officers. (I say this as a former 23-year low level police officer.) The cops in the gas station were telling people to go north then later changed it to south. Naturally, the fire could shift directions and I have no doubt the cops told the people whatever they were told to tell them, but it turned out to be bad advice at first. I mentioned low level police officers, because in my experience they’re the last to know the important information as it filters its way down the chain of command. – Spotlight
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