Fear & Loading: Blacked Out

by
posted on September 24, 2018
blackout-1.jpg

Images copyright GuySagi.com.

When Hurricane Florence made landfall it stripped some areas of all traditional means of communications, leaving residents without any means of requesting help, even after first responders could respond—a situation that put law-abiding citizens who don’t exercise their Second Amendment rights at the mercy of criminals who view disaster as opportunity.

The crime spree began even before the storm made landfall when Brunswick County (North Carolina) deputies arrested four for felony breaking and entering in an evacuation area. Dollar General and Family Dollar stores were looted after all routes in and out of Wilmington, N.C., were closed. Burglars who hit South Carolina’s Pawley’s Island during the evacuation took a safe with contents valued at more than $100,000.

Sadly, they even come disguised as Good Samaritans. In Fayetteville, N.C., a man “helping” an elderly woman to the bathroom in a shelter stole her purse, pawned the jewelry within and is still at large with the victim’s credit cards. A quartet from Pennsylvania told law enforcement officers they drove to North Carolina to help with post-hurricane cleanup—after they were arrested for allegedly looting a convenience store.  

Despite the fact the storm was downgraded by the time it made landfall, it set records for most rainfall in both Carolinas—and flood waters in some areas continue to rise. Hurricane Florence dumped 35.93 inches of rain on Elizabethtown, N.C., slightly more than an hour’s drive from my location.

Things weren’t nearly as dire here, although the power went out and the landline phone shortly after. Cell phone service died and when it finally came back connections were random and scarce—even text messages were stalled. All NOAA weather stations went black for a period and Internet finally went live again on Wednesday.

My situation wasn’t unique. A report issued by the FCC on Sept. 17 indicated in North Carolina 36 percent of the cell phone towers in Duplin County were down, roughly half in Onslow County and nearly 40 percent in Jones County. More than 187,000 subscribers had lost their cable and wired communications systems in the state, five TV stations were off the air and another 28 radio stations.

Water continues to rise in some downstream locations, so the situation is far from over. Thanks to the tireless efforts of first responders, volunteer rescue personnel and overworked utility workers, though, the catastrophe this could have become was largely averted. Hat tip to them all.

 

 

Latest

Eaa Corp Mc312 Goose Shotgun 12 Gauge F
Eaa Corp Mc312 Goose Shotgun 12 Gauge F

New for 2021: EAA MC312 Goose Gun

European American Armory Corp. introduced a model of its MC312 semi-automatic shotgun designed specifically for goose hunting.

The Armed Citizen® June 21, 2021

Read today's "The Armed Citizen" entry for real stories of law-abiding citizens, past and present, who used their firearms to save lives.

NRA 150th: Marksmanship Training Saving Lives in Vietnam

What does a 50-foot NRA range for .22 rifles in Oklahoma have to do with the combat effectiveness and survival of a Marine in Vietnam? In the young life of R.S. Hildreth, almost everything.

New For 2021: M&P Spec Series Kit

Smith & Wesson is set to offer brand loyalists with a limited edition kit that includes its well-regarded M&P9 M2.0 Optic-Ready pistol.

Preview: Cold Steel Crawford 1 Flipper

In collaboration with custom knife maker Wes Crawford, Cold Steel announced the launch of its Crawford 1 Flipper pocketknife, a blade designed to do it all.

Rifleman Q&A: Number Of Turns To Focus A Scope?

From the archives of American Rifleman, read about ocular-ring adjustments on riflescopes from the July 2004 magazine.

Interests



Subscribe to the NRA American Rifleman newsletter