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News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. Content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for or by this site - no paid ads - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used.
Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
Contact: (Pub. Since July, 2006)
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Where Has the ARRA News Service Been?

Update: After 10 days and 4 hours - but who's counting - we were blessed to have our power restored. By day 7, we purchased a generator to allow us 6 hours of power a day to help with the freezer. Unfortunately, it couldn't help with water and heating but we have a fireplace. Right now, we are very thankful for electricity, flushing toilets and everything else. The two power crewmen who restored our power were from a group of over 700 power crewmen from other states that were in our county. Imagine the number of crews in Northern Arkansas and North West Kentucky still working to restore power. Some people will not have power for another month. The problem is the number of downed power poles. The sheriff deputies and national guardsmen are still working to reach families in isolated areas.
Bill Smith (Ozark Guru), ARRA Editor: The ARRA News Service originates in the heartland of America - right in center of the Ozarks. On Monday a severe ice storm hit the Ozarks. The ice had 36 hours to accumulate on all limbs. This has not occurred in this region for about 8 years. However, all local news reports depict that residents who have lived here all their lives have not seen this severity in an ice storm with the resulting damages.

The storm ranged from Oklahoma to Tennessee and Kentucky. The devastation to the trees was beyond imagination. To quote one source, "The property damage has been exponential. Limited business, and all walks of life were affected." As trees snapped and crashed all night, it sounded like a war zone. By Tuesday, yours truly joined hundreds of thousands across the region losing power. As of Sunday evening, we still do not have power and the power company isn't offering much hope for a quick recovery. It is a little frustrating in that our neighbors just a mile to the North of us have their power restored. But such is the nature of the situation.

We were totally blocked in with our lane to the main road totally covered with downed trees or hanging tree limbs. By Wednesday, with the sun shining and the ice melting, I started up the chainsaw and started clearing but unfortunately the task was going to take several days and some areas with hanging tree tops were too dangerous and there was no way to get around them. However, our neighbors who were staying in town sent some of their workmen out with a huge front end loader and in a couple hours had our lane opened. God bless them!

We know that living in the Ozarks requires planning for emergencies and temporary power outages. We had some wood stored up and water put away. But, we did not plan for the potential of many days and possibly a month before power is restored to all the people in the area. Our water ran out fairly quickly; so we gathered ice, snow and the run off from the melting ice on the roof to have water for "necessary' things. After five days the power was restored to some in the Mountain Home, AR area which is 10 miles north of us. Some friends who had power invited us to use their showers, God Bless them!

Also the local volunteer fire departments and emergency services had arranged for water and meals if needed. Since we were eating up everything because the refrig was gone and the freezer was starting to lose its use, we didn't need meals. We used the gas grill outside to heat water, coffee and for cooking meals. My wife is a champion at getting things done and a great cook even on the grill.

Yesterday, we were able to make it to Mountain Home and buy needed items (food, batteries - a very hard to get item, etc. Lowes, Home Depot and Wal-Mart shipped in truck loads of generators to the areas which arrived on day three and were sold out by day four. People who could get out came to Mountain Home and stood in line for hours. There was no price gouging. From the radio (nice to have batteries), we heard that all the generators had been sold. When we stopped by Home Depot to see if they had some batteries as Wal-Mart and other stores were out, I noticed someone leaving with a generator. I asked if there were any left and they advised that there were still four left. We bought one and I set it up today. Right now the generator is powered up, and with the working phone line , thus the Internet, I am posting this story.

As bad as it has been, there are others in far worse situations. Deaths are still at a minimum. However, many fear what will be found in a few weeks as mountain roads and lanes are cleared and families are finally reached. Crews from all over the country have arrived to help the local power companies. God Bless them!

But the biggest problem is clearing the fallen trees both from the roads and from power line areas so these people can do their job. Also the crews had to be housed along with the people who left their homes with no power for shelter in the local communities. The churches have been fantastic in opening their facilities to house, sleep and feed people. For some reason our local community college, Arkansas State University Mountain Home, which has extensive new facilities built with taxes by the local residents, has not offered assistance even though they had full power restored early.

Also, yesterday after a delay of five days and constant pleas for assistance, Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe finally agreed to order the National Guard, from the Southern regions of the state which were not hit by the ice storms, to provide assistance. The county and community leaders and power company officials have pleaded from day one for assistance. They needed the National Guard to help clear roads and to travel the isolated roads to check on people to see if they are okay. It has become clear to all, that Arkansas state officials were not prepared to address this emergency.

I regret that the daily Washington updates and other items could not be posted. However, my sources have kept sending me input and I just downloaded over 5000 emails. So I may even post a few items retroactively. We still do not have power and the phone system is intermittent as they have the substations on generators. But be assured the ARRA News will return. Please pray for the people in the Ozarks and for the power to be restored sooner than anticipated. God bless you as well!
Tags: Arkansas, ARRA News Service, Bill Smith, ice storm, Ozark Guru, Ozarks To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 5:47 PM - Post Link


Blogger TexasFred said...

God be with y'all.. I have friends in the same boat over in Kentucky, got to talk to one of them for a few minute this PM...

Bill, stay in touch as you can...

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Snow, Ice, Wind Storms, We’ve seen the after-effects, entire communities without power!

Here are some tips on how to safely restore power due to unexpected power outages and safely use emergency generators.

How to Choose the Right Emergency Electric Generator

How to Safely Operate a Portable Generator and Transfer Switch

Generator Safety Frequently Asked Questions

Anonymous Navyman Norm & Mrs. B. said...

I thought you, who are smart enough to live in the warmer, milder regios of our country, might get a small chuckle out of my "angst" with all the snow and cold we, here in the frozen tundra of Strongsville, OH have been experiencing and got again this morning.

Six more inches of white stuff and still coming down! It has been the coldest and snowiest January in history in the Cleveland area. But that doesn't stop the enviro-weenies and AlGore, the world's foremost meteorologist, weather forecaster and only living brain donor..

If I see a driver with a "Think Snow" bumper sticker today, I will bury that person in a snow drift. No jury in Ohio would convict me!

Enjoy your day and pray for our,
Navyman Norm (aka Nanook of the North)

Anonymous Boston Patriot said...

Bill; this is a wonderfully written story. It is tragic and curious as to why the so-called news media is not calling attention to this situation. It is every bit as egregious as Katrina. I guess the story doesn't fit the preconceived agenda of the left-wing press.


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