Katrina on the Hudson

November 14, 2012

Katrina or Sandy? Late warnings, confused and inadequate responses, FEMA foul-ups and suffering refugees.

4:13PM EST November 13. 2012 - Is the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy turning into Katrina-on-the-Hudson? Pretty much, and that tells us some things about Sandy, and Katrina, and the press.

One parallel: A late evacuation order. Even before the storm struck, weatherblogger Brendan Loy -- famous for calling for early evacuation of New Orleans before Katrina struck -- criticizing Mayor Bloomberg for not ordering early or extensive enough evacuations in New York, and for making the "ignorant" statement that Sandy wouldn't be as bad as a hurricane.

What Bloomberg said was, "Although we're expecting a large surge of water, it is not expected to be a tropical storm or hurricane-type surge. With this storm, we'll likely see a slow pileup of water rather than a sudden surge...So it will be less dangerous." Ignorant at the time, this turned out to be dangerously wrong when Sandy struck and the sea surged.

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