Disaster Preparedness Part 5
Greetings my Caribbean friends. I hope this article reaches each and every one of you in good health and in good sprite. As I am writing this article, Hurricane Irene is barreling up the New England cost toward me. The entire east cost of America is engulfs by this weather system. This is not a strong Hurricane like the one that hit New Orleans but it massive and it is dumping so much water and wind on the coastal areas to prove itself worthy of being a very dangerous Hurricane. About 65 million people are affected so far. I certainly hope every Caribbean leader is glued to their televisions and taking notes, because never in our entire lifetime did we have such a high level of organization and mobilization coming together in response to a portentous disaster.
First of all, let me congratulate President Obama for putting such a massive relief plan together. There are shelters, food, and relief supplies in every safe area across the coast. There are also emergency personnel, military hardware, and hospitals, all of which are standing by in case Irene rebels. I said it once and I will say it again; we are the first line of defense in the event of a Hurricane and yet we don’t have a single measure in place to help us defend ourselves. We need to stop thinking of ourselves and our countries as individuals. We need to think of the Caribbean as one and come together as such. That is the only way we can create this emergency fund; each and every Caribbean country and its people have to contribute in creating this emergency fund.
Hurricanes and earthquakes are unpredictable. No one can tell you in advance how much damage either one of those will cause if your country is in the path of one of those. It doesn’t matter how well prepared you are or how much money your country has or how fast you can move your people to safer ground in such an event. A hurricane or earthquake con quickly paralyze your country and its emergency mobilization, which means you have no choice but to depend on your neighbor next door. There again you will see how important it is to come together and do something meaningful about the situation.
We may never achieve the level of man power nor receive the relief support America can bring to bear in the event of a disaster. But if anyone of the Caribbean islands were to suffer a catastrophe misfortune like the one brought on Haiti, we should be in a position to bring some form of relief to them in less than an hour. Please think about that. We do not have to wait for countries like America or Great Britain or even the media to beg for the aid to help our people. Instead, we should be in the business of preserving our people, preserving their Caribbean Islands and the environment surrounding our nations. So today I am calling upon all heads of government, business leaders, and relief organizations to come to the table and let us put this emergency relief system in place.
Writen by Stephen Fanus.