Specific Warnings for Individual States
This page is for individual states in the United States, and I will add to it as I think of specific states.
California Rain in Winter sometimes leads to mudslides and sink holes. Also, anearthquake is another possibility in California.
Florida: Hurricane season lasts from July to October. Those would be the least desirable months to visit.
Indiana stays on eastern standard time year round except for the northwestern part of the state.
Midwestern States in these states with large rivers, flooding can be a hazard, especially in the springtime.
Northwest Indiana has what is called "lake effect snow" which means that the area close to Lake Michigan receives more snow, but the temperature is milder. Lake Michigan warms the air so that it readily condenses into moisture such as rain and snow.
Oklahoma is sometimes called "tornado alley" because it has so many tornadoes, especially in the springtime.
Southwestern & Southern states in July & August, the heat and/or humidity is extreme.
...to be continued.Related to:
- Road Trip
General Warnings for United States
The following warnings apply to the United States in General:
Avoid large attractions such as Disney Land, Disney World, or National Parks during the summer months and Christmas holidays when American school-age children are on vacation. These places at those times are filled to capacity!
Do NOT wear expensive jewelry, which is a neon sign for thiefs.
ALWAYS wear a money belt, especially in areas that locals tell you are "high crime" areas.
Unlike some countries, the USA DOES NOT have any National Medical System. Thus, Comprehensive Travel Insurance is a good idea.
Since September 11, 2001and the terrorist attact, US airports, US national and state monuments and parks as well as most sport's facilities conduct security checks, which may delay & frustrate you. "Patience is a virtue".
In the United States, parking is allowed only in one direction of travel, and parking rules are strictly enforced. Fines can be quite expensive. Always pay fines immediately because the fine will be charged to the rental company who will, in turn, charge it to your credit card.
If you drive in the USA, Avoid large cities, especially during rush hour traffic:
Morning 6-9 a.m.
Evening 3-6 p.m.
Before going "off the beaten path", ask at your hotel about the safety of the area.
to be continued...Related to:
- Study Abroad
- Road Trip
Acid Rain & What Pennsylvania is Doing
Acid Rain is a term used to refer to rain that is high in acid. Many states have problems with it, & Pennsylvania has some of the most acidic rain, snow, fog, & sleet in the USA.
What causes it?
Rain that falls downwind from industrial areas contain a good deal of acid, caused when high levels of sulfur dioxide & nitrogen oxide gather in the air. The chemicals come from coal-burning power plants &car exhaust.
The coal mined in Pennsylvania is high in a chemical called sulfur. When the coal is burned, it sends poisonous clouds of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere. Along with exhaust from cars & trucks, these chemicals return to the ground as acid precipitation.
One of the big problems in Pennsylvania is that acid rain is slowly eating away at bronze & stone monuments at Gettysburg National Military Park & elsewhere. The state is working to offset this damage. The monuments at Gettysburg are carefully cleaned & covered with a layer of protective wax as have other parks.
The state has required power plants to reduce emissions to help control the pollution. Smokestacks at coalburning power plants in the state have been fitted with "scrubbers" to filter out the sulfur dioxide. These scrubbers use powdered limestone & water to absorb pollution before its released into the air. But, the scrubbers leave behind tons of waste called sludge,causing the landfills to become polluted. National laws have called for less-polluting vehicles. As a result, the amount of sulfur dioxide produced has decreased about 1/4 since 1980.
The good news is that even though Pennsylvania receives some of the most acidic rainfall in the country, it causes less damage here than in some other states. Why? Geologist say that Pennsylvania's soil & rocks are naturally low in acid & can absorb the acid in acid rain without great harm except in the Pocono Mountains.
Thank goodness Pennsylvania has set up a monitoring system. It must be working; the levels of acid drop each year.Related to:
There can definitely be some inconveniences when tent camping. The biggest one we came across was the wind. In northern Utah, we tried setting up the tent and ended up chasing it down the park. Unfortunately, the sites were sand layered over concrete or something, so we couldn't anchor it down. The next morning, I got up pretty early and the ranger came over to talk to me. Apparently, tent camping isn't too popular at "Starvation Lake, Utah" Taking the tent down wasn't easy, either, as you can see from the picture.
Other weather can interfere, too. Rain is nice against the tent, but after an all night soaking rain, even the most waterproof of tents can get damp. And cold. We only decided to get a hotel room after we were pelted by sleet combined with driving winds.
At Glacier, there was an avalanche warning, but we camped at a pretty low elevation.
There were also fires beginning in New Mexico when we passed through there...probably wouldn't have camped in a wildfire, either.
Make fun of me all you want, but checking the weather is IMPORTANT!! Especially if you're camping.Related to:
- Budget Travel
- National/State Park
Don't get gored by bison. That wouldn't make for a good trip. Apparently this is a big problem in the Yellowstone area. Some jackass thinks that s/he can get really close to get a perfect picture or even try to feed them, but they get tossed up in the air. These animals weigh, on average, 1000 pounds, but get up to almost 2000. They (the rangers, not the bison themselves) will hand out bright yellow piece of paper when you come into the park about the dangers of getting too close to the bison. The may look like docile creatures, but they aren't...
The Please Don't Show Me State
No visual is necessary, believe me. We were driving outside of St. Louis...and I mean right outside of the city, heading to Kansas City on Interstate I-70 when it happened. A man on a motorcycle began pacing us. He came up to my side (the drivers side) of the car, I looked over quickly and made a comment to Jeanette about this A$$hole who was keeping up with us. He fell behind, then came up to her side. He did this a couple times, till he was back at her side and she looked over. He then proceeded to um...expose himself to us. While driving at least 70 miles per hour. She said "Oh my god, Katey, you will not believe what he just did" and told me. I couldn't believe it either! He came up to my side again, I didn't look, but she did when he was back on the passenger side. She said it was because she couldn't believe she saw what she did, but he winked at her and smiled. I tried to weave in and out of traffic (which was very heavy, we certainly weren't alone on the road when he pulled it out) and finally, after about 30 miles, we lost him.
Now, we were a little disgusted, but more amazed. That takes some good coordination to do that at such a speed!! I mean, he has to maneuver a bike and do that at the same time! It had to have hurt, right? Well, anyway...just beware of flashers on the highway. This is the 3rd incident where a stranger has exposed himself to me, 2 of them when Jeanette and I were traveling together.Related to:
- Road Trip
Four times on our trip, and most of those times being in Colorado, we got stuck in construction. This isn't ordinary construction where traffic is slow or stopped momentarily. This is the kind where they close one whole lane on a 2 lane road and both lanes need to be directed by a pilot car. Most of the delays were about an hour where we just had to hang out at the car. The 1st time, we were tired, we had no gas, we were hungry and needed to find a bathroom and it was so windy outside, we could barely stand. After that, when it happened again, we just laughed. Be prepared for these--there is SO much constant road construction in the US. In Pennsylvania, the roadwork usually lasts about 5 years, minimum.
You can check road conditions on any states dept. of transportation homepage, Rand McNally road atlases are great about updating that information as wellRelated to:
- Road Trip
california is dry and every now and then forest fires are doing a lot of destruction.
i came across quite a few of them when i toured around.
the biggest ones where the ones in san diego.
we had 5 days where the sun was barely visble because of all the ash coming from the fires.Related to:
Mind the evacuation signs
Whether you visit the Outer Banks of North Carolina, the Gold Coast of Florida, the Jersey Shore, or Cape Cod, be mindful of hurricane season. From 1 June through to 30 November of any given year, if you make holiday at the beach, you will see "hurricane evacuation route" signs on the way in. Make a mental note of them so that in case you have to cut your holiday short due to an upcoming hurricane, you can make a clean getaway. Hurricanes are nothing to be fooled around with, even a weak category 1 hurricane could mean bad news if it hits your holiday spot directly. Leave when told to do so by local authorities. Thanks to ClarkRB for finding me the photo I will use between now and the next time I go to the beach.
american humor is not like european.
americans don't joke with disasters and death the same way the european do.
the guy in the middle was wearing a shirt for helloween with an american flag and made bullet holes all over the shirt and painted it bloody.
most foreigners thought it was a great shirt and were laughing their heads off, but some locals took it offensive, so be a little careful with your 9/11 jokes.Related to:
Bark Scorpions in Arizona
One of the common hazards you may run into in Arizona is the bark scorpion (Centruroides exilicauda). The typical "bark" or "crevice" scorpion is encountered in a variety of situations. It is most commonly found under rocks, logs, tree bark, and other surface objects. The bark scorpion (1-3 inches in length) is the most commonly encountered house scorpion. They are common throughout many habitats but almost always in rocky areas. Most scorpion species are solitary in nature. The exception to this is bark scorpions, which may over-winter in aggregates of 20-30. The bark scorpion is also one of relatively few species that are able climbers.
The venom of the bark scorpion may produce severe pain (but rarely swelling) at the site of the sting, numbness, frothing at the mouth, difficulties in breathing (including respiratory paralysis), muscle twitching, and convulsions. Death is rare, especially in more recent times. Antivenin is available for severe cases. Certain people, however, may be allergic to the venom and can experience life-threatening side effects when stung (as occurs with bee stings). No cases of anaphylaxis have been reported in Arizona. The bark scorpion can also be found in extreme Southeast Calfornia. Isolated sightings have been reported in other states surrounding Arizona.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Adventure Travel
Do Not Take Anything But Pictures
It is illegal to dig and/or remove anything from National or State Parks (unless otherwise identified) pr areas controlled by the Bureau of Land Management. They will have you arrested if you are caught. Help us preserve our history by leaving things where you find them.Related to:
- National/State Park
- Historical Travel
- Family Travel
Obey the Signs
You should pay attention to these signs. There are sometimes places where the water flows across the road during monsoon season. The water can be deeper than it looks and can flow very quickly. The water can also be a indicator of a coming flash flood. Please obey the signs. Apparently someone was angry at this sign. See the bulletholes?Related to:
- Road Trip
- Historical Travel
- Family Travel
The weather may be very hot and hard in some states during summer season.During my trip on July 2,003,we had a few days more than 100 degrees in Kansas,Texas,Arizona and Nevada.Really it is very common to have such a high temperatures in all these states during this season.
If you visit some of these states in summertime then you must to wear,comfortable clothes and shoes,also may be a good idea to wear a cap to protect your head of sunlight, and don't forget to drink a lot of water,some places in a few of these states are like real deserts,so be careful about that!!.
Picture taken in Arizona.
America, Is it Dangerous?
This here is a picture of Al Capone, the most notorious gangster in American history. I mention him because he typlifies an image that most people including Americans have of crime in the United States. Gangsters like Capone are responsible for most of the violent crime in the United States. In fact I have just recently heard on CNN that the Los Angeles Police Department stated that 40% of all of the murders in Los Angeles for the first three months of 2003 were gang related. What does that mean to the average tourist then. Well since few if any belong to the Bloods or Crips or any other gang, it is then unlikely that they will become a victim of gang violence.
This brings us to the other forms of violent crime in America. Ask any police officer and he or she will tell you that most murders tend to be domestic related. Spousal homicide and other family related issues. Furthermore the remaining percentage of violent deaths can be attibuted to mostly violent confrontations relating to alcohol and drug abuse. The instances of someone being murdered by someone they do not know in America are relatively rare. What I am attempting to say in all of this is that the most likely way to get murdered in the United States is to really irritate someone.
Which now brings us to other forms of crime in America. Yes property crime is a problem but so is it in Western Europe, Australia and even Canada. The differences in the levels of property crime between these regions is minimal. Keep your valuables locked away when you leave your car and your hotel and you will not have any problems.
United States of America Hotels
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