The end is near. The collapse is in its final stage. Middle class and lower ones are totally vulnerable. There are economists suggesting to bug out the country until this has passed.
This is something that is going to be extremely hard to achieve, though. We could live in time because of some savings that were favorable because of the exchange rate, but once we crossed the borders, the economy of the real world started to affect.
The situation in Venezuela has become dire.
The reports I have been receiving are…impacting. No matter the city, or the country, the atmosphere is concerning, according to the people I talk to. There have been fist fights at the gas pumps, the uniformed personnel is charging 10 dollars for a gas tank in some places, and I don’t mean the workers. If you want to avoid the line, that can be arranged. You only need money. All of these are things that are happening. They are facts because people I have known by years tell me and send me live proof of this. The footage, pictures, everything. This is reliable information we all can trust in. And one of the most remarkable traits one of them, a music fan, has been very insistent because he’s deeply shocked, is the silence. It’s comparable to a huge, thick, invisible blanket, covering everything and anyone. A few cars passing by. A few people walking. No public transportation. No buses. Few trucks. No electricity, so no music. A few businesses open, despite not having electricity. Some of them with a power genset outside, with cabling running to the machines. These are the only loud noises that can be heard from time to time.
The gasoline supply will soon be cut off entirely.
And very soon, not even this noise is going to be there. The gasoline supply is very close to being suspended to anyone without an official badge. The reason is simple: there is no personnel in the industry to continue the extremely complex oil chain supply to extract oil, process it to get the derivatives, and transport them to our customers. In an incredible twist, even for those illiterates exposing themselves as the rulers of a failed state, it has been submitted the order of incorporating military personnel to oil crude tankers. A profession that needs years of training and a decent level of literacy…well, you can get the picture.
The safety standards are now going to be…well, “different”, so to speak. Let’s see what happens with this. The reality is, no matter what the so-called “authorities” of the national oil company says, the gasoline (petrol) and vehicle gas production is going to a halt. I believe my sources and not the official ones. The gasoline being produced internally is close to 60 octanes, people. This means that we came back to standards circa 1940. I don’t really know if ethanol is produced here (I doubt it), so mixing with this is not feasible. If you think this is not going to harm a high tech, fuel injection system, I can tell you, yes, that change in the capability of the fuel to generate chemical power is going to hurt. The modern systems are designed to work with gasoline over 90 octanes (a measure of the energy of the fuel). This gasoline explodes well, and the deposits that can be found are removed by the special formulation that acts as a detergent or anti surfactant agent, keeping these very small solid particles within the liquid, and expelled through the exhaust. Most of these chemicals were imported, as far as I know. The industry had projects to replace them, in the medium-long term, but until the unmentionable uncle arrived and got the key of the treasure chest…you know what happened. The industry’s money started to be diverted to the Socialist Party, and reinvesting in the infrastructure was no longer considered a need. Nothing to be surprised of, considering the education level of most of the management that allowed that to happen. Many of them now in jail, by the way. OK, but that’s part of the history.
The gas that is available is of very low quality.
Let’s get the simple facts. There is being produced a fuel of very low quality, and the imports from Russia have additives that are very harmful, like antifreeze, something useless in the tropics. And to be honest, if someone believes in Russian quality controls at this era, needs to make a thorough revision. They’re facing huge problems with their economy, that’s why they needed the gold of my homeland. My impression? They managed to convince the bus driver to get all the gold he could (14 tons according to some reports in YouTube), and they will fade away while the overweight shame of a Colombian gets himself in prison or dead. With the stolen gold in Russians mafia pocket.
Sorry about that side line, but it was needed to explain part of the mess we are facing.
With this low quality of gasoline, I consider a poor choice to get stuck with this kind of fuel. In my case, knowing about chemical processes, physical properties, having lab training, and being able to manage myself to build a (very) primitive biodiesel facility, and the possibility to grow corn, sugar cane…the idea is becoming increasingly attractive. Because perhaps I could have stayed, or I could have come back to my homeland a year ago, using the few savings available to deal with the collapse of the power grid, somehow.
Do you see why a good, carbureted or diesel, old school, simple vehicle is going to be a need as a BOV? I don’t say that your state-of-the-art vehicle is going to be useless. But once I can get my paws in some money to repair my middle 2000s SUV…I’m not going with tons of electronics. I know enough of automotive engineering to keep the computer as a controller of airbags, centralized security, and some other interesting features that I plan to keep. There are tools for reprogramming the ECU of the car. But the engine will be a good old fashioned carbureted V8 or V6, with twin exhausts, a good 3in. lifted with the best tires I can find, and a towing hitch. With the stock suspension, I know that I can overcome some obstacles not very large, and I found it useful to get ourselves out of a couple of uncomfortable situations on the road (read the previous articles please). That improvement is going to be a need. And I don’t ride fast so the changing of the mass center is not going to be a concern, and I am well aware of the dangers of high-speed driving.
It is getting more difficult to obtain food and supplies.
There is a lot of tension, the atmosphere is (again) that one of desperation. Some cities like Maracaibo, once the economical bellybutton of the entire country, is described for the inhabitants like a postwar scenario.
I want to make something clear. The scarcity had reached some point of equilibrium. If you needed some product, say, toothpaste, coffee, or salt, soap, it was hard, but after a 1 or 2 days tour through all the city, it was likely to be found. Of course at an international, and often inflated, price, and in dollars. Of course, you had a chain supply working at 15 or maybe 20% of its capacity. This is not going to be there. How are the vegetables and staples to arrive in the cities? I have seen studies than the production level are barely reaching (in the major cities, though) to just 1 of 10 persons in the country. Ten years ago, we produced primary products enough to satisfy over 50% of the demand. This is registered in Fedeagro statistics, a farming producers association. With the currency product of the exports of these same primary products, the remaining percent was obtained. The irrigation systems are not gravity fed. The power grid failure has affected this activity. And to top it off, those producers that invested large amounts of money in gensets to provide for electricity and pumping water to the crops, will not have fuel.
Gents this is bad. You don’t have a clue how bad. The power grid failure is such, that the entire country’s capability to feed itself is going down. The scarcity right now is forcing people to be 4 days in a row to refuel their tanks. This is not an exaggeration, this is happening.
The dairy industry is operating at unknown levels of efficiency. There are no means enough to register this information, as the communication lines work intermittently, as the power grid itself. How can a producer keep milk under the required cold chain without power? One million liters were lost just in the Zulia state, one of the largest dairy producers. Seventy percent of the meat shops in the Western states are closed. No meat enough.
On the other hand, guess who are those we are not just surviving, but indeed living life without too much difference?
Those living in homesteads far away from densely populated centers. Those who are as self-reliant as can be. I am sure that, given the possibility to generate enough fuel like biodiesel, or using some hybrid means to transport supplies to the cities, a lot of the crisis that is coming would be not as impacting. Because I believe, that it’s going to be worst than any possible prediction.
Meanwhile, I am working in my “free” time with the designs of some setups I know will be necessary once we come back. Things are going to be much better, I am convinced of that.
Once things have improved enough, we will come back. The good part of all this is, that my retirement was not exactly affected, so to speak. All this mess just moved forward the date.
Thanks for your reading, people. Subscribe to the website to keep reading our story, and be informed step by step about how a crisis unfolds.
I appreciate all the support you have sent, it has really kept my head above the water. Being in a foreign country with no job is one of the tougher things I have ever done in my life. It’s part of the survival, though…
God bless you, people!
Thanks for your comments!
Jose is an upper middle class professional. He is a former worker of the oil state company with a Bachelor’s degree from one of the best national Universities. He has a small 4 members family, plus two cats and a dog. An old but in good shape SUV, a good 150 square meters house in a nice neighborhood, in a small but (formerly) prosperous city with two middle size malls.
Jose is a prepper and shares his eyewitness accounts and survival stories from the collapse of his beloved Venezuela. Thanks to your help Jose has gotten his family out of Venezuela. They are currently setting up a new life in another country. Follow Jose on YouTube and gain access to his exclusive content on Patreon. Donations: paypal.me/JoseM151