Re: Y2K: Am I paranoid?

Michael S. Lorrey (
Thu, 11 Feb 1999 13:55:16 -0500 wrote:

> Because anything that the Aucklanders needed could be shipped in from the
> rest of New Zealand, which had power, or Australia, which had power. If
> power goes down in most of the world (unlikely, but possible), or if power
> goes down in some places and airports and rail go down and highways are
> blocked with cars and trucks, you can't do that. I don't think Y2K will
> get that bad in most places, but probably will in some.

Why would the power outage make highways get blocked? Traffic lights being out would definitely be a problem on regular streets, but highways should be fine. Gas stations would need generators to run their pumps, for sure. I'm thinking that it might be very profitable to just go get my electricians license again... everyone will need to be taken off the grid so they can run their buildings off of generators... then put back on when the power is back. I can easily see emergency electric service fees exceeding 100-200 dollars an hour.

> >I think that emergency
> >management agencies have plenty of generator capacity to maintain C3I
> >during
> >such emergencies.
> Only one problem with that... many of the military's biggest Y2K problems
> are in the command and information systems. This is one reason why the
> National Guard are going to be testing callout with good old low-tech
> shortwave radios later this year.

Of all the departments of the gov't, the military is apparently doing the best job on y2k. They also have all of the old procedures documented, and plenty of outmoded equipment stockpiled in reserve centers. I'm not too worried about them.

> >Anyone who does not buy a generator even for minimal houshold
> >tasks deserves what they get, considering the amount of advanced wanring.
> Problem: business-sized generators are in short supply, and most people
> can't store enough gas at home to run a smaller generator for long. Not
> to mention that if we do get into a roving hordes situation people would
> be fools to run generators and attract them. I'm thinking about buying
> one, but it would be primarily as a useful gadget for film-making, not
> for Y2K alone.

I don't know where you are shopping, but my Northern Supply Catalog rep has given me a three-to-four week delivery time on a 20kw generator. Generators 10kw or less are in stock. For a business of more than that, just buy a bunch of small ones and string them together....I got a 3kw generator for my cabin last year for $125, used, after the ice storm winter of last year. People were dumping generators on the used market like crazy, stupidly. They are gonna buy them again this year...

Most medium to large industrial installations have co-generation plants on premises, which means that they have their own sources available. Reboot their controllers after Jan 1 and they should be ok.