Friday, 2 September 2005

natural disaster madness

Ricky wonders about the madness following the devastation of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina, and whether the same thing would happen in Australia. I guess the closest thing we've had is the destruction of Darwin by Cyclone Tracy in '74 - obviously a much smaller storm in area, if not intensity, and mitigated by Darwin being above sea level - which basically levelled the city. Now obviously one can't compare a storm that killed 65 and evacuated 30,000 to a storm that will likely have killed thousands in a city of 1.3 million, but I've never heard of any great level of lawlessness in the wake of Tracy, and everything I've heard and read suggests the government response was much more immediate (effective too, but that's again of less viable comparison given the scale - immediacy is fair game though). I'm sketchier on other big Australian natural disasters like Black Friday or Ash Wednesday, but they're of even less direct comparison being fires.

Now, Australia's a country very prone to natural disasters. Cyclones and large-scale bushfires are an annual risk, and droughts are fairly regular and frequently followed by floods. However, so is the US. Hurricanes and tornadoes happen every year, in predictable regions, so there is really no excuse for unpreparedness or for tardy reaction. (Talking to people in Bretagne about natural disasters is silly; there aren't any, and I don't care what they say).

1 comment:

S said...

I'm a big Pat Metheny Group fan!!
:) I recommend this. 'Eddie Higgins Trio'!! cya :)