Need to get caught up on the first book? Read the first book, Braving the Storm, at the below links:
Read the first 4 chapters here: http://bravingthestormstory.blogspot.com/2015/07/introduction.html
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/braving-the-storm-jennifer-brooks/1124241056?ean=9781543962529
This is Amy from the American Radio Relay League delivering the latest news from the Electricity, Storm, and Blackout Zones.
After extensive talks with representatives from Mexico and Canada regarding the future of U.S. currency, it was decided that combining the countries’ currencies into the Amero is not a feasible option. Economists agree that this course of action would ultimately make the financial situation worse as Canada would have to shoulder the burden of two other countries in crisis. Economists have also spoken out against using either the gold or silver standard as this method would be too rigid and not align well enough with the rest of the world’s fiat currency.
Through private donations and the occupation of all food warehouses within the Electricity Zone, the federal government has developed the Ration Program to keep its citizens fed until the New York Stock Exchange can be restored and a new United States currency implemented. Military-based operations housed in every Ration Station will issue Ration cards to American citizens registering for the Program. These cards will contain special chips which can be scanned at any Ration Station in order to obtain a week’s worth of Rations for one person. Civilians must be able to provide their social security number as well as some form of identification in order to receive a Ration Card. Once registered, their Card will have their picture to ensure that no one can unlawfully obtain their Rations. The government understands that many people may not have a means to verify their identity; many may have lost their IDs while evacuating their homes and/or migrating to the Electricity Zones. Measures are being taken to authenticate the identities of anyone without necessary documentation, including the use of preexisting social media accounts and/or other data stored on any available online servers and storage clouds.
Because diesel locomotives are now shipping supplies across the country, the federal government reports that it was able to successfully retrieve the servers from the Social Security Office in Maryland and transport them to the New White House in Portland. Once these servers are restored, more civilian information will be accessible to the Ration Program, enabling more people to enroll for Ration Cards. Ration Cards are available in some areas of the Blackout Zone, especially those bordering Electricity Zones and in some pocket towns with an independent power grid. Some of the more restored portions of the Storm Zone also have Ration Stations. Any Stations will be visibly marked, and signs will be placed in a 10-mile radius to direct citizens to its location.
Most of the Blackout Zone still does not have Ration Stations as most food distribution centers are occupied by local gangs and militias. The government is working on establishing Ration Stations in some locations near train stations and other fortified locations within the Blackout Zone, but there are still many logistical complications regarding the storage and security of these goods as well as being able to access the Ration Computer System in order to register new citizens. More news as their efforts develop.
Coal-powered, steam engine trains have been restored in Border Zones and are making short-distance supply runs into the Blackout Zone to assist farmers in growing more crops, ranchers in raising livestock for Rations, and to begin repairing the Eastern Grid on both sides of the country. Though most coal mines have been defunct for over a decade due to reduced dependence on fossil fuels, any accessible mines are being reopened to keep these antique trains running. Volunteers with experience in any of these industries are requested to volunteer in exchange for additional Rations.
Most Storm Zone cleanup efforts are reporting 65% completion. Because more supplies and volunteers have been transferred to the Zone via diesel trains, restoration efforts have increased significantly. Some casualties have been reported due to hypothermia and other medical issues as a result of the colder weather, and efforts are being maximized to reduce the risk of more fatalities by moving refugees indoors once space becomes available. Many citizens have already been relocated from local tent cities, stadiums, and other outdoor living quarters into existing refurbished structures. For areas without existing space available, architects and construction workers are using available scrap materials—drywall, metal shipping containers, wooden pallets, and so on—to build miniature homes for displaced citizens. Any civilians still residing in open air facilities are being provided with all the supplies needed to seek shelter from inclement weather and to stay warm until additional lodging becomes available.
Blackout Zone restoration has begun in some areas near more undamaged Storm Zone locations, their efforts primarily focused on power line repair. Most major cities cannot be addressed due to gang takeover, but those in safer areas are being provided with additional supplies, food, and clean water. Most patients that had been under medical treatment in facilities located within the Storm and Blackout Zones had been relocated to the Electricity Zone, but these medical facilities will be reopened once they pass inspection and the patients transferred back to reduce crowding in the Electricity Zone medical facilities. The government is asking for anyone with any medical expertise to volunteer in exchange for additional Rations.
This has been Amy with the American Radio Relay League. This message will repeat.