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Out of the Blue

Well now that things are getting back to normal here, it's clearer to us just how badly the superstorm impacted other nearby areas as this has left a lot of families without homes, much less electricity, with wintery temperatures on the way to exacerbate things. As is often the case, seeing the power of the forces of nature can be a humbling reminder of how much of the idea that mankind has mastered our environment is an illusion.

Illusory Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Portals
Stories: Boeing Dreamliner makes U.S. debut Sunday morning. Thanks Slashdot.
Images: New York Magazine Cover Featuring Incredible Photo of Blackout in Lower Manhattan.
Media: Jimmy Kimmel - YouTube Challenge - Halloween Candy.
Most Hilarious Chili Challenge I've Ever Seen. NSFW.
Is It Possible Pop A Wheelie On A Moped With 4 Passengers?
The Funnies: FoxTrot.
Follow-up: New York Neighborhood Celebrates as Power Comes Back On.

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9. Re: Out of the Blue Nov 4, 2012, 21:23 Rigs
I can't understand how many times this country has to go through disasters, one after another it seems, before it finally takes the money out of the something like, oh I dunno, Middle Eastern foreign aid, and puts it toward preparing this nation for the next Katrina/Sandy/earthquake /tsunami/super-volcano /terroristNBCAttack/CanadianSyrupInvasion/AlienFirstContact /solarCME/GammaRayBurst/AsteroidImpact/zombieApocalypse...The first thing that should be done is the establishment of regional stockpiles of critical products like food, water, blankets/clothes, gas, etc. So what if it sits there for years? At least it will be there when it's needed. Plans need to be enacted, like evacuation routes are now, to streamline what is done when each certain disaster occurs - ie. setup of gas pumping stations at 30 mile intervals, one for officials, one for public. A 'one-stop-shop' where all information is funneled and dispersed so people can come to the offices or call to get the very latest information and not rely on rumors or speculation. We have Twitter, Facebook, the internet and smartphones, company and government networks - USE THEM! Use the social security numbers and driver's license database to setup an official 'call-in' center. After a disaster hits your area, you call in and either dial in a PIN number or text message a PIN to show you are ok or need this or that. This info (not the SS#'s themselves) goes to the aid workers and your family/friends can call in to get updates or go online to see if you've checked in and/or need anything.

NEXT! The nations power grid needs to be modernized and BURIED! Put those bad boys underground! I don't understand WHY this hasn't been done yet?! What's the first thing to go in a storm? The power. Why? Because a line or pole gets knocked. Ok, well where can you put it that it doesn't get affected by wind, rain or snow? Underground! Hell, build whole passageways so if there IS a problem underground, you only need to open the access door/hatch and go down the access tube/hallway. Build real 'Jefferies Tubes' underground! Then harden and protect the lines with realtime monitoring and 24/7 on-call support and constant maintenance. Stop trying to put a bandaid on a corpse! It's going to all collapse if it's not overhauled! Plus this might mitigate a possible Sun burst or EMI pulse attack.

THEN! Setup staging areas where the National Guard and certified contractors meetup, get the sitrep and fan out to start recovery efforts. The chain of command is known to ALL individuals and every one knows who's in charge of what and what the procedures are.

Before any of this, it's time to put money into a early warning and detection network in the ocean. Setup hardened structures/buoys at set intervals out from certain spots to give clear information on approaching storms. I'm talking hundreds of these things, linked both by cable and wireless by satellite. These 'buoys' would extend out in a semi-circle from say Cape Hatteras, NC, having a comma shaped line of them at 50 miles, 100, 200, 300, 400...etc, then another set further south in the Caribbean. Then another set headed west from Tampa, FL and south from New Orleans and east from Galveston. In addition to hurricane hunter planes and remote controlled surface/sub surface drones, these buoys would give a real-time look at the conditions there, with real time video, so they can see how the conditions are at sea level. This would coincide with a change to the scale at which tropical storms and hurricanes are labeled as. Instead of the Saffir-Simpson scale, a new way would be developed to give a clearer vision to ordinary citizens of the dangers a particular storm would present. Currently, only the wind is taken into account. As we've all seen, that's rarely the only thing to cause damage and destruction. This new scale would show what kind of potential a storm could have of causing floods, wind damage, storm surge, tornadoes, coastal erosion/pier damage/boat and dock damage...AND it would be tailored to each area based on time of year, storm path, storm history, the area geological layout and population density...

This can be and HAS to be done or we will suffer these disasters over and over again, sitting, asking ourselves why we have to endure it. We don't have to. We have the means, we only need the will. It shouldn't take war or the threat of war or a terrorist attack to get us to make a fundamental shift in our response to disasters.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. What we're doing now isn't working! It needs to change!

Avatar 14292
'Now, we gave you a promise and we are bound by that promise and damn you for asking for it! And damn me for agreeing to it! And damn all of us to Hell because that is exactly where we're going!'
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