Skip to comments.Fisherman, who saved lives with knot-tying to teach youngsters survival skills
Posted on 11/12/2012 7:06:27 AM PST by afraidfortherepublic
With just four minutes and a series of well-tied knots, Michael McDonnell saved himself and his Belle Harbor neighbors the night Hurricane Sandy hit.
The experienced fisherman and surfer from the Rockaways fashioned a lifeline from electrical wire and twine to ferry a half-dozen people to safety from raging waters and fire.
You are only as good as the knots you make, he said.
Now McDonnell is hoping to take his experience to youngsters and others to help them figure out what to do if they have only minutes to evacuate their home as he and others in the devastated Queens neighborhood did on Oct. 29.
The water popped the windows and rushed up to the staircase, said McDonnell, 51, a sales manager at Chefs Diet. Then a gas line erupted in the home behind us. I was seeing embers the side of baseballs.
(Excerpt) Read more at nydailynews.com ...
I always use granny knots to tie my extensiton cords together....
I can do a pretty good fisherman’s knot but I haven’t mastered a good bowline. Something about a bunny going around a tree and down a hole. I have always avoided granny knots since I’m left handed and learned early that a granny knot is what my weird brain always wants to tie.
that’s knot nice.
Which begs the question, why didn’t the people in NY and NJ in low lying areas leave before the storm surge hit? In 1900 they didn’t have the same kind of warnings that we have now.
They had a weeks worth of warnings that it was coming and they stayed right there, kind reminds me of Katrina.
It wasn't at all certain where Sandy would make landfall until a few days before it hit, not "weeks". And then mandatory evacuation of the easily floodable Zone A was not ordered until a day or so before the storm. No one knew it was going to exceed Hurricane Irene in its ferocity. People have seen over and over again how the weatherman hypes storms and they've turned out to be nothing. A lot of the deaths from Hurricane Sandy were not from people failing to evacuate; they were from trees falling on people well away from the storm surge and electrocution from fallen wires well away from the storm surge. In areas where they should have been "safe". So please spare us your armchair quarterbacking and air of superiority. You have no idea what you're talking about.
Has he never heard of the Boy Scouts?
What he is describing is the job of “Scoutmaster”.
We were without power for 2 weeks after Ike with trees down on powerlines and houses and streets. Citizens with chain saw were out the next day clearing them away. Don't ever think that Gulf Coast residents don't know about hurricanes and hurricane warnings.
The people of Galveston AT THEIR OWN INITIATIVE AND THEIR OWN EXPENSE raised their whole island by several feet by pumping in sand and built an extensive sea wall in the aftermath of the devastating 1900 hurricane, which begs the question as to why nobody tries to raise New Orleans and other flood prone areas along the Mississippi River if they are going to continue to live there. I don’t believe any part of Galveston that is protected by the sea wall has flooded since.
I do think that most people did heed the warnings to evacuate. The area stores were quickly cleaned out for water, generators, gas stoves, bread, plywood, etc. That shows that people were preparing as instructed to. As I said before, a great many of the 44 deaths took place in areas considered “safe” and away from the water, from being crushed by falling trees and by electrocution from fallen live wires in puddles. There were many incidents of people saving themselves, like the fisherman with his knots, not waiting for the government. There was no mass huddling in “duh” mode waiting for the government to save them as occurred in Katrina. Of course, the media hyped the few most spectacular cases of “stuck on stupid”, like the imbecile mother who waited until the waves were lapping at her door to take her 2 y.o. and 4 y.o. sons out in her SUV to find higher ground and THEN took the road right along side the ocean when she did it, having the 2 tykes washed out of her arms by strong waves. Had not most people taken this seriously and prepared, there would have been far more than 44 deaths in the NYC area. Obviously, some people were just, unfortunately, being called home to the Creator, no matter what they did.
I lived in the Houston area from 1973 through 1982. Periodically the Houston Chronicle published retrospectives of the Galveston hurricane of 1900. Chilling! I tear up every time I think about the nuns and their young charges all roped together. And so many bodies after the storm that they had to be burned on the beach! I don’t think that they ever had an accurate count of the lives lost.
But, the stories of the Galveston recovery are inspirational and instructive — especially concerning the fact that the Government did not initiate the corrections. Nowdays, I’m afraid, the Government would get in the way of such an engineering feat.
Michael McDonnell, 51, made a lifeline out of extension chords and ropes to get 6 people through flood waters while their homes burn during hurricane Sandy.
He mostly talked about how he and others survived in the 2nd floor of a house. The water was a foot or more deep in the 2nd floor. Galveston Island is very low, maybe 3 or 4 foot where he was, so the storm surge was huge.
I have read that 6000 to 10,000 people died that day, still the largest loss of life in a natural disaster in the US.
Read Issack’s Storm.