Displaced Families Are a Real Problem to Plan For

Emergency sheltersWe live in the tourism capital of the world.  Central Florida is the vacation capital of the world, On any given day there are in excess of 500,000 people living in hotel rooms, resorts and cruise ships. These people have come here with limited resources and no supplies.  During a disaster they will quickly become what is known as displaced families.

Orlando has over 144,000 hotel rooms.  During a disaster that is the equivalent of 144,000 displaced families.  With the surrounding areas such as Daytona, New Smyrna and Cocoa Beach the total number of room/families exceeds 200,000.  Look at the number of hotel rooms in your area.  You will then better understand the potential for displaced families in your area.

No matter where you live, there will be people who are visiting or who have made no plans for an emergency.  There are  people who live paycheck to paycheck.  There are also people who could not live a week on the supplies they have put back.

Too many people expect the government to take care of them in the event of an emergency.  The government may have the resources to take care of some people for a short period of time.  The government does not have near enough resources to take care of everyone for a long-term disaster.  The resources are even more scarce if the disaster is on a national scale.

Visitors and Tourist Have No Resources

They came thinking that they would eat out for almost every meal and they brought only credit cards, little cash and clothes for a week to 10 days. They are not prepared for any disaster. After all, they are on vacation.

Hotels and resorts have enough supplies for a few days at most. Without resupply they will quickly run out of resources. These displaced families and individuals will begin to scatter out and become scavengers, pillagers and outright looters. The situation will quickly deteriorate to the point of aggression and violence.

This situation will escalate quickly and could become desperate and aggressive within a week or 2 of the disaster. If the disaster lasts more than a couple of weeks these people will either die or become very dangerous as they expand beyond the tourist area looking for food, shelter and supplies.

What Would You Do?

EvacuationThink about their situation and put yourself in their place.  What would you do?  How would you provide for your family?  Where would you get your next meal?

These people have nothing to barter with.  Credit cards will not work.  They probably have no way of getting home.  Without the charity of others giving up their supplies they will certainly do without and possibly die.

When you travel take plenty of cash or barter items with you.  In a short-term disaster or emergency you will use the cash to get home and back to your supplies.  Do not rely on credit/debit cards to get you home.  In a grid down situation plastic cards will not work and you will not have access to electronic funds.