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Disaster Zone

by Eric Holdeman: Emergency management in the blogosphere

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The Most Prepared City is...
December 09, 2012
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We Americans like to think we are the best at everything.  People tout our healthcare system, educational system and form of governance.  While points can be made to support all of the above, e.g. our higher education system is exceptional, there are other minuses that detractors can also point to.


We have an excellent emergency management system here in the United States, yet in practice I don't see the fruits of that system bubbling up to deliver disaster resistant cities and regions.  No one is going to claim one of our cities as being the most prepared in the world.


NBC Nightly News had a story on what they titled perhaps the most Disaster Ready City in the world.  When the story was being introduced I thought of Tokyo and then switched to Hong Kong because I've read something previously about their focus on disasters.


Sure enough, it was Hong Kong being touted as the most disaster ready city.  The most impressive images were those of the underground storm water storage system they have.  While not illustrated very well, they also have some significant landslide/rock slide barriers on the hilly sections of the city.


What they did not describe was the willingness of the citizens of the city to go along with disaster preparations and to be compliant with directives about their personal safety.  


Maybe in a generation, after we work hard, we might be able to at least put forth our most disaster ready city for an international competition.



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