question to Arlin Adams : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread


I happened to notice on a previous thread that you're from Wisconsin. I've been here all my life (other than a short stint in the A.F.). I'm curious to know your current thoughts on living in Wisconsin after y2k.

Best regards,


-- dan (, May 13, 1999



Arlin posts his real e-mail address.

-- Bingo1 (, May 13, 1999.

I live in madison,any one near?pop my email,we'll talk..

-- zoobie (, May 13, 1999.

Hi Dan,

yeah, I grew up there, and while I don't live in Wisconsin now, I have dozens and dozens of cousins and other relatives who are still back there, so I've been watching that area with interest. Everything I've seen so far has suggested that Milwaukee, Madison, and probably Green Bay/Fox Valley will probably be able to keep the electricity on most of the time, though I wouldn't bet on not having any blackouts or brownouts. (haven't seen enough about LaCrosse to have even a guess). The problems with the electrical utilities will occur in the west central and north - northwestern parts of the state where the older setups of some of the REC's will cause problems - those smaller cooperatives just do NOT have the money to do the sort of wide spread testing that the big guys are doing.

Haven't seen much of anything on the water utilities other than in Milwaukee, which last I heard was working on the problem.

I guess my primary concerns in Wisconsin would be:

1. fuel supply - in the middle of winter you can't push barges up the Mississippi, and you can't bring much shipping through the Great Lakes, which means folks better have enough fuel to at least get them through to April, 'cause if the railroads start having y2k related problems there's no doubt there will be at least some shortages. When I was living in sand country (Marquette County, actually) just about every other home had a woodstove in it. Hope most folks have hung onto those just in case.

2. In the urban areas (Milw., Madison, the yuppified part of the Fox Valley/G.B. area) especially, one needs to be aware that one is at the end of a relatively l-o-n-g supply chain for food and other consumables, and plan accordingly. Since most folks in rural areas generally keep a lot of stuff on hand anyway (ever been snowed in and gotten down to that last roll of t.p.? or discovered that you had neither bread nor the ingredients to make any?...been there done that didn't like it even a little bit..) you probably wont hear all of the 'hoarding' accusations we hear out on the east coast...but you need to plan ahead, and remember that all of those supplies coming in the first few months of 2000 may have to go past a bunch of other hungry folks to get to you, no?

Rural areas are also going to have to watch it with regard to the water supply. So many folks have put in high tech wells and sold grandma's old pitcher pump to some flatlander tourist as an 'antique'...sure you can melt snow for drinking water for human consumption, but I'd hate to have to do that to provide water for say 70 or 100 head of milkers...folks need to be thinking ahead a bit on livestock water sources - since breaking through the ice on the pond everyday is also going to get real old real fast.

One also does not need to be quite so concerned about people in other areas of the country becoming refugees and suddenly deciding that the perfect place for them to flee to is a part of the country where the wind chill index can hit 45 degrees below zero (or colder) at night. The only exception I would make to this would be in the intial few days of 2000. As far as I've been able to tell the Chicago/Gary metroplex looks like it could have some real problems. If all those flatlanders decide to get in their cars and go somewhere, the somewhere they *might* head for would be Milwaukee - especially if Milwaukee still has electricity (which it probably will). Now *that* could cause some real least in the short term. Quite frankly the biggest advantage you have going for you in this regard is that it will be Wisconsin in January. Other than drunk Packer fans, one does not have riots in Wisconsin in January under any circumstances. At least not for very long.

sorry for rambling on like that,

just my 2 cents' worth, Arlin

-- Arlin H. Adams (, May 13, 1999.

What Arlin is saying about Wisconsin works for Minnesota too --

Don't forget barge tows use oil too... The Mississippi in winter is closed for sure from Winona north -- Lake Pepin usually is covered with 6 feet or more of ice. Anyone living on a lakeshore can alswya get water -- auger a hole thru the ice, hitch up a hand pump, and fill your pails.

-- Tom Carey (, May 13, 1999.

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