May 12, 2003
Disasters can come with little or no warning. If we are prepared for
what might happen, then the unexpected can come as less of a surprise.
Information and preparation can provide strength (and something to
fall back on) when the unexpected happens.
This past week, Tornados
struck much of the Midwest:
"OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters)
- President Bush authorized the release of federal money for Oklahoma
on Saturday after a second tornado in two days hit the Oklahoma City
area. Friday's tornado moved 75 miles, ascending back into the clouds
and descending to the ground to damage hundreds of buildings one day
after a separate twister damaged thousands of homes
immediately south of the city."
And there were snow storms
in the Rockies:
"Heavy snow falls in
Colorado and Wyoming
Saturday, May 10, 2003 Posted: 9:41 PM EDT (0141 GMT)
DENVER, Colorado (AP) -- A spring storm dumped several inches of heavy,
wet snow on Wyoming and Colorado Saturday, snapping branches of trees
that had bloomed for the season and causing several accidents on slick
roads. Up to a foot of snow fell in the Colorado Rockies, and more
snow was expected, according to the National Weather Service....The
downed or sagging branches caused power outages that affected some
35,000 customers at one point in Colorado, said Xcel Energy spokesman
Mark Stutz. More than 10,000 customers in the Denver area and Boulder
were without power Saturday evening, according to Xcel."
Summer will be here soon,
and with it comes the fire season:
2003 Fire Season Outlook Valid: Issue Date: March July
March 10, 2003 ...
The fire danger across some areas of the Southwest Area is expected
to be above average during an overall normal length fire season. This
is due to continuing long-term drought, a better than even chance
for above normal temperatures, low amounts of winter snowpack at the
mid-elevations, and widespread vegetative dieback due to insect and
U. S. Forest Service
Around the county, 911 emergency
response teams are preparing for disasters people might intentionally
"A national bioterrorism
drill for hundreds of firefighters, police and other emergency workers
began Monday with a mock explosion of a radioactive 'dirty bomb' in
a car in a Seattle industrial lot. Meanwhile, volunteers at Pacific
Lutheran University near Tacoma, about 40 miles to the south, simulated
a second, simultaneous attack. The attack involved a car bomb as well,
but the scenario also called for a terrorist to run into a campus
building and take hostages. The five-day drill, combining the Seattle
disaster with a mock bioterrorist attack in Chicago, is aimed at testing
the readiness of local, state and federal authorities. It is the nation's
first large-scale counterterrorism exercise since the Sept. 11 terrorist
attacks. The idea, said Mayor Greg Nickels, is for regional and national
agencies to see where strengths and weaknesses lie." http://abcnews.go.com/wire/US/ap20030512_1505.html
With earthquakes, hurricanes,
other natural disasters, and unknown man-made possibilities, a person
could be paranoid. With all we know about the possibilities (and the
chances of them actually happening where we live), a person can be
(and should be) prepared. FEMA wants you to know what to do. They
want everyone to know what to do and how to prepare, and they have
made the resources available to all.
"Are You Ready? A
Guide to Citizen Preparedness brings together facts on disaster
survival techniques, disaster-specific information, and how to prepare
for and respond to both natural and man-made disasters. As the most
comprehensive guide to personal emergency preparedness published by
the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Are You Ready? will
help individuals prepare themselves and their families for disasters."
(From this site you can download information for specific disasters,
or access all of the information, all at no cost.)
Question of the Week:
What disasters might affect your area of the country? How might these
affect you, personally? How should people in your region prepare?
How might this be the same as (or different from) how others across
the country should prepare? How can knowing what to do--and having
what you need--help reduce stress and offer strength at a difficult
Please email me with any ideas or suggestions.
Note: Due to increasing amounts of SPAM sent to this account, please include "QOW" in the subject line when sending me email.
I look forward to reading
what you have to say.
Health Community Coordinator
Access Excellence @ the National Health Museum