When Seconds Count: Getting Emergency Assistance to Your Rural Home

In an emergency, when seconds count, you want to make sure you've done everything you can to help emergency assistance crews find you.

| December/January 1998

We country folks know an emergency always happens at the worst time, generally disrupting our plans. But we're capable, independent, and self-reliant. It's our lifestyle: we deal with it. The calf gets scours, we cure it. The pump quits, we fix it. The tractor loses a wheel, we replace it. We know what to do.

We don't call for outside help unless it's unavoidable. Maybe that's why, when seconds count and we need emergency assistance, we're woefully unprepared to get it. I know how disastrous that can be.

A sound woke me shortly after I'd fallen asleep on Good Friday eve, 1987. Beside me, my husband moaned, "Oh, my jaw's hurting."

I turned on the light and looked at him. "Are you all right?"

"Something's hurting my chest," he said, "and my arm..."

Labored breathing choked off his words. His face was ashen; sweat beaded it. Suddenly, my heartbeat thundered into my ears as I thought, "Heart attack!"

mother earth news fair 2018 schedule


Next: April 28-29, 2018
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!