Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Reflections on Rita and Katrina

I'm listening to the Houston news stations. While I wish ever so much that Hurricane Katrina had not devasted New Orleans three years ago, I think that it taught our country some valuable lessons. We weren't prepared when Katrina hit. We learned more with the mass evacuations for Hurricane Rita.

For Hurricane Gustav and now for Hurricane Ike, we, as a nation, have much better plans in place. The buses and ambulances are already transporting special needs patients and people who can't get themselves out of harms way. The teams are already in place to begin the rescue operations after the hurricane strikes.

I've also been glad to hear that fuel trucks are standing by to avoid the problems encountered with the evacuation for Rita!

I wish that we were not getting hit by so many storms this year, but I'm glad to see that we're doing a better job protecting our citizens.

We've obviously allocated more public money to help prevent loss of life from these terrible storms. This is a good thing. Even so, each family that evacuates has their own set of expenses - gasoline costs, lodging costs, and then potential repair costs or rebuilding costs when they return home. Not to mention the loss of family heirlooms and personal items that people are not able to take with them. I am glad to see the news media, the public officials, and the people who live here take these storms seriously.

I don't like the current projected path. The area between Galveston and Houston is heavily populated. While there are not levees to break, storm surges and flooding can damage and destroy many people's homes. I'm praying tonight that the storm does not reach Category 4 and that it comes in in lesser populated areas. I'm praying that people do heed the warnings and find safe shelters to ride out the storm.

While there are many areas that are already under mandatory evacuation, the city of Galveston behind the seawall is not under mandatory evacuation. The seawall is an impressive structure - that certainly raised all of the land near the coast about 10 feet - enough for many storm surges. Another amazing solution to avoid the disaster that happened here in 1900.

Time for bed - and contemplating whether to take my sunrise shots in the morning, check what we need to do for the condo, and see if we need to head back home and watch the rain and flooding our home area is likely to get.

1 comment:

Phyllis said...

These are lovely shots..of the 'before' so it will make the during and after even more interesting. Enjoy the adventure and I will come back to look after the storm!! I liked your thoughts on thinking before we drill in the Artic Wildlife Parks. There are no many other alternatives. I am always wondering what our grandkids will think when the birds go....