This dog's face is a whole mood pic.twitter.com/gEGmRwnLCW
— Jane Lytvynenko ???????????????????????????? (@JaneLytv) September 14, 2018
Florence: At least 14 deaths reported as storm slogs across Carolinas https://t.co/UuTpwOWyiU
— Brady Dennis (@brady_dennis) September 16, 2018
In case anyone needs a rejoinder to the ‘ha ha, stupid people who won’t get out of harm’s way’ disaster-glee…
…Evacuation, like most disaster resilience actions—and really, like most of life—is easier if you have wealth, health and extensive social networks. Being able to pack up your life and leave takes privileges you may not even realize you have. Everyone is doing the best they can based on their personal context.
It takes money to displace yourself. It takes having somewhere better to go and a way to get there. Having a full tank of gas is a luxury when you live paycheck to paycheck. Spending money up front and then waiting for reimbursement requires that you have the money in the first place, while knowing what expenses are covered and how to file the paperwork requires knowledge not everyone has or has access to.
Missing shifts at work is unthinkable when every dollar counts. Some workplaces keep employees as long as legally possible, more worried about lost profits than lost lives.
Delayed evacuation carries a different risk due to the sheer number of people trying to escape on roads that can barely handle rush hour, much less a mass exodus. People can be trapped in gridlock on the roads, running out of gas—or, worse yet, still be out in the open when the storm comes and the floodwaters rise…
Vulnerable populations—immigrants, single parents, elderly, people with disabilities, people in poverty—all face unique risks. Evacuating depletes community support during a diaspora, a frightening prospect when the people around you are essential to your survival. It increases stress on elderly, sometimes with fatal consequences: clearing out retirement and homes can actually kill their residents. Yet staying in place and suffering through mass infrastructure failures can do the same thing.
People with disabilities, injuries or illness may require specialized equipment to survive. Without a custom vehicle or assistance from others, it may be literally impossible to evacuate…
People impacted by disasters need you to have empathy. They need you to advocate for preparing for the next disaster while still recovering from this one. They need your support, whether it’s in the form of cash donations; voting for politicians with the integrity to vote for spending money on mitigation before the next disaster rather than on relief afterward; or even sending them cute animal pictures to cheer them up after another long day of cleaning up the mess. They need your help, not your judgement…
Meet Robert Simmons. Was stuck in his house since last night, when floodwaters began to rise in New Bern. A boat came and rescued him just now. He was sad to leave his father but left with his kitten hugging his neck. Cat’s name: Survivor, Simmons said. #HurricaneFlorence2018 pic.twitter.com/vRR3lANDJe
— Andrew Carter (@_andrewcarter) September 14, 2018