Monday, October 06, 2008

Ike's Rising Toll

One of the more remarkable things about the aftermath of Hurricane Ike had been the apparently low death toll. The number of dead--at least in Texas--had appeared to be fewer than a dozen. As it turns out, that figure may have been deceptively low since it only counted those bodies that had actually been found.

Authorities say that as many as 300 more remain missing. So what happened to them? Some bodies may be in remote marshes, or buried under all the debris from what used to be Galveston. Others may simply have been swept out to sea as the water receded. Those people will likely never be found.

So why do some people ignore evacuation orders? The reasons range from "hurricane fatigue" caused by previous false alarms. Others may simply lack transportation, or else they don't have any place to stay. In many cases, people just don't have the funds to stay in a hotel for what may turn out to be a week or more. And so they stay behind.

Sure, to the rest of us people like that may seem foolish. But if you think about it, how would you feel if authorities wouldn't let you near your house for two weeks? Many of us would probably find a way to rationalize staying behind.

0 thoughtful ramblings: