Hurricane Katrin A Devastating Storm

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Hurricane Katrina was a devastating storm that ravaged New Orleans, but it was more than just a natural disaster. The general public and even some top officials are quick to dismiss this great storm as an inevitable force of mother nature as if it was just another hurricane of the season. In doing so, they subscribe to a mindset that is actually a disservice to those who suffered Hurricane Katrina’s wrath. A myriad of publications like Come Hell or High Water, Overcoming Katrina, and There is No Such Thing as a Natural Disaster has exposed a startling light on how horrendously human systems can fail. It is no question that Hurricane Katrina was a natural disaster - it was a natural phenomenon - but Katrina was more-so a social disaster…show more content…
In comparison, Hurricane Andrew had a central pressure of 922 mb (1), and “wiped out nearly 30,000 homes and damaged more than 100,000 others (Powers 23). Similarly, Katrina brought violent winds that decimated New Orleans with an estimated one-hundred billion dollars in repairs (Waple 6). According to scientists in the Nova ScienceNow episode “Hurricanes”, the immense damage is particularly due to the location of New Orleans, which is ten feet below sea level and is bordered by a lake and the sea. Areas below sea level or near a body of water, in this case two bodies of water, tend to require levees to prevent flooding. Having a town situated in a place where hurricanes are prone to occur can be considered a human disaster as they put themselves in harms way. This bad situation, however, cannot be helped due to the economic opportunities of its location, so in many ways a disaster was inevitable. Nonetheless, Katrina was a natural phenomenon that ravaged the coastal city of New Orleans. Of course Hurricane Katrina was a large storm, but there should have been measures in place to mitigate its damage. However, Michael DeWayne Brown, the director of FEMA of the time explained, “this storm is much bigger than anyone expected” (Dyson 77). Brown maintains that his or any other agencies did not expect Katrina to be of such great magnitude, hence why the agency was not adequately prepared. Nevertheless, Brown’s statement contradicts a report from FEMA, the agency he

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