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Just awful

by AV . In reply to Louisiana Leaders - The e ...

Lousiana officials should have bused people out. They should have had food and water and facilities at the Astrodome to accommodate that number of people they put there if there was a castastrophe. They didn't. FEMA didn't respond quickly enough. What about the weather predictions? Shoulda, coulda, woulda.

This catastrophe really was the ultimate test of how ready we are for the world we face today. We failed miserably.

If there is anything that really jumps out at me it is this - how prepared am I personally to deal with a storm or catastrophe like that. Where should I go in the event of a disaster? What should I do? Its obvious to me that our government won't be there when disaster strikes for even the basics. Its up to me.

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You touched on what's important

by maxwell edison In reply to Just awful

You said, "If there is anything that really jumps out at me it is this - how prepared am I personally to deal with a storm or catastrophe like that."

That's the key. Everyone should assume that they're on their own if a major disaster strikes. Just like the police department really does more to respond to crime rather than prevent crime, at least for the most part, the same should be assumed with anything. Some disasters just can't be prevented, and/or accurately predicted, and/or adequately responded to. And to expect as much is being unrealistic.

I could load my gas guzzling pick-up with the bare necessities, including vital documents, and we could literally be "outta' here" in probably 15 minutes (including 20+ gallons of extra gasoline). We also have several possible destinations in several different directions that we've actually discussed and planned -- or no destination at all. We could probably live in the mountains or out in the middle of nowhere for a month or more if we had to.

I just can't comprehend how a person can be comfortable living his or her life believing that he or she is dependent on anyone else for anything at all. Now that's not to say I would expect a "free for all", ignoring anyone else who might need assistance. But just like in an airline emergency, put the oxygen mask on yourself first, or else you won't be around to help anyone else. The key to being inter-dependent with each other is being able to be independent yourself first.

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What bothers me

by jmgarvin In reply to Louisiana Leaders - The e ...

1) Where was the National Guard? They were standing by, but never deployed.

2) Why weren't people forced to evacuate?

3) Why were their buses standing buy at the Superdome, but never used?

4) Why did it take two national agencies (FEMA and "Homeland Security", three state agencies (NG, Police, FD), and a gaggle of reporters to figure out what was going on?

5) How hard is it to get bottled water from point A to point B? Jeez...

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I can't stop thinking about ...

by stress junkie In reply to What bothers me

... young children and babies not having water for five days when they were in an evacuation shelter. That really bothers me.

The fact that the city officials didn't evacuate the people without personal transportation is also troubling. I heard the mayor of New Orleans say that he didn't have any responsibility in the way that the situation was handled before the hurricane struck because of the magnitude of the storm. He wants to say that the Federal government was completely responsible for evacuating people who don't own cars. That doesn't make any sense. The city and state government failed as miserably before the storm hit as the Federal government failed after the storm.

All of this reflects the way that many business managers fail to address disaster recovery in their own jobs. People tend to say that such a disaster is so unlikely that they will risk being unprepared. That really bugs me. This disaster reflects the irresponsible attitudes of management in both business and in government that is prevalent in American culture. When a disaster actually occurs the consequences are much worse than they would have been if managers had done their job in advance, planned ahead, and put resources in place to mitigate the damage.

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About the government bussing people out

by jdclyde In reply to I can't stop thinking abo ...

Ok, lets assume for a minute that it is the governments job to bus these people out on the chance the storm hits their town.

Question, where do they go? Is the government now responsible to put these evacuated people up somewhere while they wait for the storm to **** over? Where do they put them all? Where would the money come from to house 20 to 40 thousand people? Then to feed them? Sorry, the govenment can't just make a CITY to throw these people in until the storm is over. This wasn't a few hundred people.

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You move them somewhere in the state

by jmgarvin In reply to About the government buss ...

It doesn't matter where. You can split them up into groups of 5 or 10 thousand.

The state government foots the bill for food and lodging for a couple days and if the worst happens than that is when the feds step in.

What happened here is the mayor and govenor KNEW that there were major issues and that the city was in big trouble, yet they blame the feds for not doing anything. No food or water was planned for, no training was done in the NG for a flood or hurricane, and there was very little if any support by the govenor in assisting.

Where was the distaster plan?

This was total and complete failure of disaster planning. It isn't hard to ship water out. I've done it and I can tell you a few thousand lister bags and a few million gallons aren't that hard to come up with.

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That's what planning is all about.

by stress junkie In reply to About the government buss ...

"Where do they go?"
That is what the mayor and state governor were supposed to figure out before the storm hit. They had to deal with this question during and after the storm anyway. Why not put in some time before the emergency to plan for this question?

"Is the government responsible ... to put these people up somewhere ...?"
Yes. Again, they have had to deal with this issue during and after the storm. Why not plan ahead?

"Where do they put them all? Where would the money come from?"
Same thing. They are dealing with those questions now. Why not deal with the questions in advance?

In summary all of your objections revolve around the government not being responsible. However the government has accepted the responsibility to handle all of these problems. The only unresolved question is why they didn't adequately plan ahead.

Self reliance is a fine thing and I support it. There are times that we should expect to take care of ourselves but there are also times that we should expect the government to assist us.

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We should all have pre-designated emergency shelters

by AV . In reply to About the government buss ...

We don't have any planning on the local level at all. It is the government's job to tell us where to go and give us a way to get there. Not one place - many places. We all need to know that now - before the next disaster so we all know what to do and where to go.

When I was a kid, we always had practiced fire drills and disaster evacuations. I think we need to do something like that as a nation. We should be issued a survival kit by the government. No it isn't cheap, but its cheaper to do that than respond after the disaster. Instead of training just government, we should be trained too.

I think Louisiana local and state governments were complacent. They knew in advance that many people had no cars or couldn't leave and made no attempt to accommodate them. Thats ridiculous in a place like New Orleans, hurricane capital of the US.

All local governments need to get their disaster plans together - now - so this doesn't happen again. We all need to have our own plans too.

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I feel your sentiment

by jck In reply to We should all have pre-de ...

But, Florida already has stuff like that. Buildings that are built to hurricane-tolerant specs are deemed shelters in the different cities and counties, designated evacuation routes, toll roads become free during disasters, etc.

The building I worked in at my last job was rated to withstand 250mph winds. They had 18 inch thick steel-reinforced concrete walls, metal coverings that were bolted and would seal over the windows, solid metal storm rated doors with bar locks, etc. Of course, then you were cooped up in that place for days if you had to stay there.

My biggest beef with all this is that if the government is going to pay for the total rebuild of the city of New Orleans, they should also look into requiring, as part of the rebuild, elevating the entirety of the city of New Orleans up to a level that would keep it from being under 8-12 feet of water if a levee breaks.

Meterologists have predicted that we are in an up-trend in tropical activity for about the next 10-20 years. And, the next big storm is just going to do this again and I don't want to be stuck paying for people living in the middle of a dry lake bed.

If it's going to take years to rebuild, I think it best to look at doing it right so that people don't lose homes and businesses again and again...and the American taxpayer doesn't get stuck with the bill.

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If Flordia has it.. . . . .

by maxwell edison In reply to I feel your sentiment

....then why doesn't Louisiana?

Could it be the STATE GOVERNMENT?

(okay, this is where you launch into the Bush brother crap.)

But maybe Jeb Bush is a much better governor than the miserable failure they voted themselves in Louisiana.

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