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Thread: Do I dare ask? Weigh in on your thoughts about Katrina

  1. #1
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    Do I dare ask? Weigh in on your thoughts about Katrina

    I was watching the news last night and I heard someone make a comment that my husband has been making for years now... why do people build up these big cities when they know they are in harms ways due to hurricanes? I mean it is like playing Russian Roulette. So do you guys think we should rebuild these cities or should people move further inland and use the coastline as more of a vacation spot? Should the tax payers keep doling out money for those who CHOOSE to live in spots such as these? I mean it is not IF they will get hit, it is WHEN will they get hit. I am not sure of my own feelings but it kind of makes sense to me to move out of such dire danger.

    Before I get blasted my heart bleeds for all those affected by Katrina. I will be donating and I pray daily for them. I don't wish any ill on anyone and I am full of compassion for those who have lost lives and or property. I just wonder what should be done? What do we learn from all this? Is there a better answer than what we have been doing?

    This could be quite a big can of worms to debate, but I am curious to others thoughts on this subject.

  2. #2
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    No, don't rebuild unless we've found a way to prevent this - not something depending on those fragile levees, something to stop New Orleans from continuing to sink.

  3. #3
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    Everyplace is prone to one type of natural disaster or another. We rebuild California after earthquakes, the midwest after tornados, fires in the southwest and Northeast and the coast after hurricanes.

    If or when a hurricane hits me you bet I will be here rebuilding ASAP.
    Welcome to the World Baby Caleb!!!

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    A lot to think about Anngelique, good questions.

    I always felt uneasy when I was in California - worrying about 'the big one' but no one else seemed to care.

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    I'm interested in this subject. Very. For now, I'll just say that while I was (and am) shocked and horrified at the devastation, some engineers I know are only horrified. Before the levees broke, they were predicting this.

  6. #6
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    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,167790,00.html

    Here is a good article to think about. Earthquakes are not near as seasonal and regular as hurricanes and normally the damage is not near as wide spread or devastating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anngelique
    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,167790,00.html

    Here is a good article to think about. Earthquakes are not near as seasonal and regular as hurricanes and normally the damage is not near as wide spread or devastating.
    Same with tornados. While they can be devastating, the damage is actually very limited.

  8. #8
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    Fast Facts: Deadliest U.S. Hurricanes

    Fast Facts: Deadliest U.S. Hurricanes

    The deadliest hurricanes to hit the continental United States since 1900, listed by name or nickname, location, year, category and number of deaths, according to the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory. Hurricanes in the North Atlantic Ocean were first named in 1950. Categories range from 1, the least severe, to 5.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,167305,00.html

  9. #9
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    I am a native Californian but now live in PA. I experienced 2 major earthquakes (Semi Valley 1971, San Francisco 1989) as well as many. many smaller quakes over the years. I ca say that I would live in CA again, but I would never live in Hurricane country. Hurricanes are a yearly, seasonal event. People are having to pack up and get out all the time. Year after year, sometimes several times per season. Notable earthquakes come about once or twice in a lifetime and most people get throug them without injury or damage. There is no warning so you just go through it and then deal with the outcome. Also, the hurricanes seem to be getting stronger and stronger as the world's climate changes and so we can just expect more hurricanes threatening New Orleans. I haven't heard anything about global warming causing earthquakes.

    Of course we assist a city like Los Angeles when a bad earthquake hits. So far, LA and SF have continued to be thriving functioning cities despite some serious damage. If, however, one of those cities was to become completely destroyed I would reluctantly say -- do not rebuild. That is my hope for New Orleans. It was a great American city. I regret that I never visited. I had a chance to go to a conference there a few years ago, but decided to wait until the next time --- there will be no more next time. The city has been reclaimed by the sea. The entire city is devastated and it is NOT FUNCTIONING. I doubt they can rebuild in a way that would guarantee survival of Category 4 or 5 storms considering the geography.

    Personally I think they should convert the area of New Orleans into a research center. All kinds of studies can be done on the longterm effects of natural disasters. They can study the decay of the structures, the laying down of sediments, the chemical composition of the waters, the response of wild life. I am sure that there are many possibilites that I couldn't even think of myself. Things we can learn fom this unique site. I believe that if the government and scientists use their heads they could make good use of this situation.

  10. #10
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    in California, buildings are built and sometimes retrofitted to withstand quakes.

    What I don't understand is people in mudslide areas, like Laguna Beach, who lose their homes due to a slide and then rebuild in the same spot with the same technology. Those houses just won't hold. My grandparents lost their home there a few years ago in the fires, when they rebuilt, they had to put pillars down all the way into the bedrock before even building the foundation. apparently this helps with quakes as well as slides.
    Their house is near a bunch of others that recently slid but were not as well constructed with the modern technology that should have been used. But theirs is still standing just fine.

    I don't think there's a way to build a building so that it will be safer to live in during flooding.
    I'd rather be hated for who I am than loved for pretending to be someone I'm not.

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    I don't understand those people either, Birdieboo.

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    I would rebuild my home... as Dorothy said in the Wizard of Oz "There's no place like home"....
    /


    "Would some power the Giftee gie us To see ourselves as others see us" R.Burns

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by G****
    I would rebuild my home... as Dorothy said in the Wizard of Oz "There's no place like home"....
    But should the taxpayers have to pay the cost for you to rebuild that home? Or homeowners for the higher insurance rates because of the loss of homes from storms like that?

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    I'm sitting here absorbed with this tragedy and am just stunned. I'm kind of over the shock but find it hard to wrap my mind around the long-term effects and that a city is for all intents and purposes "gone". It may one day be re-built and some buildings salvagable (altho I don't see how) but it will be a long time coming.

    Life for those people as they knew it, is over. They are homeless, jobless, have little or no posessions, completely displaced and who knows for how long? At least a month, but months and months most likely. I cannot begin to imagine living in a shelter or bunking with family and friends miles away, knowing that the only things I brought with me are most likely my only posessions left in the world. And, are those that have been long dead and buried still in their graves? I would be wondering if I had to worry about my dearly departed loved ones floating around. Morbid, I know but that has to be a concern for some.

    And this is NOTHING compared to anything these people are going through, but it makes me sad to think that the next time I want to go to NO for some good food and fun, it won't be there. Definitely not in the next couple of years. I guess my "New Orleans Bar Hopping" and the "Cat's Meow" t-shirts are collectors items now, lol. Same goes for my "Margaritaville" t-shirt.

    Anyway, whenever there is a hurricane and homes are destroyed, I am always amazed that people would reconsider rebuilding there. Yeah, CA has earthquakes, just about everywhere has tornados (esp. the south and midwest), northerners have snowstorms/blizzards so anywhere you live is prone to natural disasters. But you know that if you live on the coast, eventually, a hurricane will probably get your home, some more than once. Either by it blowing away completely or flooded. Unless I were just rolling in money and could afford to either pay the high ins. premiums or pay to repair/rebuild out of my own pocket, knowing myself, I think I would be forced to relocate. But that's me, I'm not judging others that want to stick it out time and again.

    At least MS can start to clean and rebuild now, who knows when NO will be able to? I wish I could do more than donate money, as we're all limited in what we can do. Really, I just wish that I could convince these people it's going to be okay. Or that it's okay now, they will be taken care of and they don't have to be afraid. But how naive is that? How insensitive would that sound? I just hope that I can show how much I care in small ways, the random acts of kindness and from donations I make. I want these people to know that we all care and want to ease their pain in any way possible, even if we can't.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anngelique
    But should the taxpayers have to pay the cost for you to rebuild that home? Or homeowners for the higher insurance rates because of the loss of homes from storms like that?

    Well at least it will be used in the United States instead of another country.. and yes, we need to remember that charity begins at home... I hope this doesn't sound harsh, Anngel, you know that the written word is easily misinterrputed, I am saying this in a soft voice not a harsh angry one.
    /


    "Would some power the Giftee gie us To see ourselves as others see us" R.Burns

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by shopper
    I'm sitting here absorbed with this tragedy and am just stunned. I'm kind of over the shock but find it hard to wrap my mind around the long-term effects and that a city is for all intents and purposes "gone". It may one day be re-built and some buildings salvagable (altho I don't see how) but it will be a long time coming.

    Life for those people as they knew it, is over. They are homeless, jobless, have little or no posessions, completely displaced and who knows for how long? At least a month, but months and months most likely. I cannot begin to imagine living in a shelter or bunking with family and friends miles away, knowing that the only things I brought with me are most likely my only posessions left in the world. And, are those that have been long dead and buried still in their graves? I would be wondering if I had to worry about my dearly departed loved ones floating around. Morbid, I know but that has to be a concern for some.

    And this is NOTHING compared to anything these people are going through, but it makes me sad to think that the next time I want to go to NO for some good food and fun, it won't be there. Definitely not in the next couple of years. I guess my "New Orleans Bar Hopping" and the "Cat's Meow" t-shirts are collectors items now, lol. Same goes for my "Margaritaville" t-shirt.

    Anyway, whenever there is a hurricane and homes are destroyed, I am always amazed that people would reconsider rebuilding there. Yeah, CA has earthquakes, just about everywhere has tornados (esp. the south and midwest), northerners have snowstorms/blizzards so anywhere you live is prone to natural disasters. But you know that if you live on the coast, eventually, a hurricane will probably get your home, some more than once. Either by it blowing away completely or flooded. Unless I were just rolling in money and could afford to either pay the high ins. premiums or pay to repair/rebuild out of my own pocket, knowing myself, I think I would be forced to relocate. But that's me, I'm not judging others that want to stick it out time and again.

    At least MS can start to clean and rebuild now, who knows when NO will be able to? I wish I could do more than donate money, as we're all limited in what we can do. Really, I just wish that I could convince these people it's going to be okay. Or that it's okay now, they will be taken care of and they don't have to be afraid. But how naive is that? How insensitive would that sound? I just hope that I can show how much I care in small ways, the random acts of kindness and from donations I make. I want these people to know that we all care and want to ease their pain in any way possible, even if we can't.

  17. #17
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    I am kind of along with the same path, but I am so heartbroken right now that everything I say and do is directed there. I want to make it right but what is right? It is just too painful to get my mind around it all right now.I do what I can when all other avenues seemed destroyed and that is pray.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mabel
    Same with tornados. While they can be devastating, the damage is actually very limited.

    yes mabel, why is it tornados only hit trailer parks?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anngelique
    But should the taxpayers have to pay the cost for you to rebuild that home? Or homeowners for the higher insurance rates because of the loss of homes from storms like that?
    In this case, where the State of Louisiana was well aware that the levees in a below-sea-level location were not strong enough to handle a storm like this, it bothers me.

    My husband has a salesman in the area who tried unsuccessfully to sell products which would strengthen the levees. The state didn't want to spend the money.

    Of course, what's done is done. It is an everloving nightmare down there. The problem is not that we aren't willing to do everything that we can. The problem seems to be the water preventing the aids/supplies/help from getting to the areas which were hit the hardest.

    ETA: My husband called the Governor's office today and offered his company's help. He was told that someone would call him back immediately. Do you think that anyone called him??

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Casshew
    A lot to think about Anngelique, good questions.

    I always felt uneasy when I was in California - worrying about 'the big one' but no one else seemed to care.

    hi cass, welcome back! for me living here in 'the big one' country', i don't worry about earthquakes. i put it in the same catagory as getting in a car accident. if it happens, it happens. although i was out of town when the 1989 loma prieta quake hit, i might sing a different tune if i was in that one!
    Anngelique, don't know the answer, but i do know if there was a major earthquake here every 2 or 3 years, i would be living somewhere safer.

  21. #21
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    Hurricanes, and New Orleans are two different things. I'm OK with rebuilding in a hurricane area - there's too much hurricane area, and they can hit almost anywhere. But rebuilding an area below sea level, with two big bodies of water held back by a few levees, in an area that gets hurricanes that makes it highly probable that the levees will break sometimes (this wasn't the worst case - they didn't get a direct hit, and it wasn't a cat 5) - I think that is just asking for it - like building a house on a flood plain - it shouldn't be done. If it is, we shouldn't pay for the new house to be built there.

  22. #22
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    Go here:

    http://cbs5.com/

    This is an excellent video on what happened with this levy.

    Click on the video on the RIGHT-HAND side of the page titled
    "Understanding New Orleans Floods"
    I don't know how long this video will be here, but I just watched it, so it's still up.

  23. #23
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    I just had a big long story about our flood ready to post and deleted it. I told myself... "keep it simple - stupid."

    People should have a choice about where they build, but safety should always come first. In our area one is not permitted to build in a floodplain. But any older homes that exist can be sold. Of course, if you buy in such an area, you must buy flood insurance...and it isn't cheap. That's why I am atop a hill, overlooking 2 creeks, I have jokingly said for years that if the creek gets this high, there's a whole lot of people in BIG trouble. But in 1996 I was seriously preparing to head even higher.

    Mother Nature is fickle. So many possibilities of disasters, it's all about safety and being prepared.

    Another thought I had tonight...when disasters happen around the world the good ole USA is always one of the first ones out there to lend a helping hand...are we getting any offers of aid from other countries?

    My heart goes out to all those people, young and old. God bless them all, and get those children some food and water.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by tybee204
    Everyplace is prone to one type of natural disaster or another. We rebuild California after earthquakes, the midwest after tornados, fires in the southwest and Northeast and the coast after hurricanes.

    If or when a hurricane hits me you bet I will be here rebuilding ASAP.
    Exactly. By the time we all move out of the Western states (earthquakes and threat of tsunamis), the Midwest (tornadoes, floods and blizzards), and the Gulf and East Coasts (the obvious), where are we all going to live?

  25. #25
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    Many of the people who hadn't left New Orleans because of the storm were unable to leave due to not being able to afford a tank of gas since it was end of the month. Some of these people may not be able to afford property in other places. I just hope that they all really do get some good long term help.

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