Hurricane Preparation

It is the day after the hurricane made landfall and the media is reporting that  hurricane victims are complaining that FEMA has failed to knock on their doors with food and water.  Two events are at play: the first is that the people had the opportunity to evacuate and failed to do so and second, they choose to shelter-in-place without preparation.

Why would a person weather out a storm and not be prepared?  Have we become so foolish to believe that no matter what life mistakes that we make, someone will be there to fix them for us.  And if FEMA doesn’t show up to fix our mistakes, we immediately run to the media.

No matter how prepared FEMA is for a storm, if you are going to sit out a storm, you need to be prepared to care for yourself (and your pets) for a week.  It is the commonsense portion of your disaster plan… you know, the plan that you should have made before the storm…. before running to the media.

We have become a society of victims.  We are too shortsighted to recognize that we become victims of our own foolishness.

Preparing for Disasters

One of the greatest outcomes of Hurricane Katrina was FEMA recognizing the importance of pets during a natural disaster.  FEMA opened the door to the creation of pet friendly shelters.  People like the idea of being sheltered with their pets.

Often preparation is the most important aspect of disaster preparedness; but cleanup after a disaster will aid in being allow back.  I was never able to make headway in opening pet friendly shelters in a county in north Florida because one previous attempt was made, years before my arrival, in a public school.  Whoever organized the sheltering of animals in the school left the cleanup to school personnel.  School administration never forgot that.

It is an important reminder that cleanup after a disaster could be the most important aspect of preparing for your next disaster.  In the Boy Scouts, we always had a rule to leave a campsite better than we found it.  It is a good rule to follow when closing down a pet shelter following a disaster.