31 December 2021

Disaster at 5280: Contingency Planning & Relief in 2022...

As our 737-900 descended over the Rockies into DEN yesterday, there was a clear view of the front range and the Boulder Flatirons in the distance. Snow storms were only 48 hours away, and yet as the extreme winds buffeted our plane we admired the city at 5280 ft.

Only a few hours later as we drove around NW Denver, the smoke started to became apparent. Little did we know that communities just North of us, were on the verge of an unpredictable local catastrophic disaster.

The winds had picked up and now you could sense something was very wrong with the wall of dark smoke blowing East at 75+ miles an hour.

Then we saw the local news about Superior, and the immediate evacuations as the roaring fire headed due East from Rt. 93 and the foothills just West of Superior and Louisville.

24+ hours later, it is still not quite over and we have witnessed 500-1000 homes and a hotel along with some other local businesses incinerated, as fire crews worked through the night to save lives and get people to safe havens.

Once you as a human, come so very close to pure disaster and witness the shear power of mother nature and her ability to devastate everything in her path, of the fire, and the wind or the water…you realize you are never going to be totally prepared.

In 2022, let us all agree, that we can only devote more time to understand, making more informed decisions and acting quickly to our respective rapidly changing events, incidents, threats and inevitable crisis.

Through every disaster across America, there are valuable “Lessons Learned” and for us as humans to respond in productive and heart felt outcomes.

Here are a few quick ideas that may be worthy of consideration with your family:

  1. How might you and yours set up a digital “Cloud” account in Box or Amazon or Google or Protonmail, to upload and place copies of your most vital personal .pdf or scanned documents, home insurance, tax records and even business/financial information?
  2. How might you place a fireproof lockbox/safe within your house to place physical documents, Passports, Birth Certificates and other unreplaceables (jewelry, medals, keys) or legal information that may take weeks or months to replace?
  3. How might you and your spouse/partner practice with other family members, in other cities across the country, on contingencies and family actions, just in case Tornadoes, Hurricanes, Floods or Wild Fires and even Earthquakes occur without warning?
  4. What types of insurance coverages have you added to your policies to include certain types of disaster scenarios, that have a likelihood of occurring in your particular geography?
  5. Once you have established the baseline for 1-4, how might you improve your planning by exchanging the plans with your other trusted family members and asking each other important remaining questions?

As the local “Denver News” helicopter flew over the remains of these neighborhoods this morning, one could only wonder why some houses were spared and others next door were completely gone with only a chimney remaining?

“Our First Responders and local businesses are still in the first 72 hours of this disaster and yet you can see the sorrow and the emotions on everyones faces.”

Colorado and other NGOs across America will assist in the days ahead and we will grow stronger and more prepared for our next crisis as the snow showers and storms finally arrive here…

Godspeed Colorado in 2022!

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