Friday, September 02, 2005

Natural disasters vs. terrorist-created disasters

Planning for the next several months continues to run along across the Coast Guard. While planners are waiting to find out exactly what will be needed along the Gulf coast, they're moving forward assessing current readiness and how individual units will be able to balance current and ongoing operations with Katrina-related efforts.

From today's New York Times a pressing question:
Some questioned whether the federal government's intense focus on terrorism had distracted from planning practical steps to cope with a major natural disaster.

Disaster experts acknowledged that the impact of Hurricane Katrina posed unprecedented difficulties. "There are amazing challenges and obstacles," said Joe Becker, the top disaster response official at the American Red Cross.

Under the circumstances, Mr. Becker said, the government response "has been nothing short of heroic."

But he added that the first, life-saving phase of hurricane response, which usually lasts a matter of hours, in this case was stretching over days.
The Coast Guard remains primarily in rescue mode. Your Coasties know they will continue to save lives.

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