Hurricane Katrina

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussions' started by tcnixon, Sep 7, 2005.

  1. tcnixon

    tcnixon Active Member

    Dear Friends,

    My wife, Elizabeth, will be leaving in a couple of weeks to volunteer with the American Red Cross in the Gulf Coast after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. We are not sure at this point where she will be or what exactly she will be doing, but we are sure that it will be a place of need.

    Because I am going to be the stay-behind parent, I am hoping to raise money for the Red Cross by reaching out to friends and acquaintances here and around the world (as well as volunteering locally). If you have not had the opportunity to contribute, I would strongly encourage you to go to American Red Cross and do so now.

    And, yes, the woman never ceases to amaze me.

    Tom Nixon
  2. Jack Tracey

    Jack Tracey New Member

    May God bless Elizabeth and everyone she encounters in her mission.
    (and God bless you too, Tom)
  3. DesElms

    DesElms New Member

  4. Tireman44

    Tireman44 member

    This is from a poster on another forum. Soonermeteor is a first year meterology student and this is quite interesting.

    So the University sponsered a forum on Hurricane Katrina through the school of geociences, and several of our professors, plus other guests, put on short presentations covering a wide aspect of the storm. It was for grad students, but my mentor brought myself and my group to it becuase he said it would be very interesting and a great experience. I took a lot of notes during the presentation, and will put down what I learned.

    The Storm Itself:
    * The NHC is still a little confused about how strong katrina got in the gulf. They say it was at least 175 mph and the pressure was down into the lower 900's. However, they have some unconfirmed and speclatory instruments they used on the storm, but have proven to be somewhat reliable. These instruments showed, though, that the sustained winds in the storm may have approached 200mph for a short time, and 1 gust near the surface was predicted to have been 230mph. however, like i said, these were mainly experimental, so most doubt such an intensity, but will continue to study it further. To expand on the storm before landfall, it was a very large storm, 1000 km wide and some points.
    * when the storm made landfall, the highest sustained winds the NHC could find was 120mph, which means katrina may actually have been a cat 3, becuase of a ERC at landfall. The surge at Grand Isle, LA, was only 6 ft. However, when it reached Miss, the storm surge was at some places over 25ft high, and much worse then camille. Also, waves as the hurricane approached the coast were recored at nearly 45ft, with a shocking 1/1000 waves being nearly 100ft tall. 100times the normal volume of water went up some of the river deltas in MIss and LA.
    * Both with this storm, and a study one presenter did on Ivan, the experts seem to think intensity is overpredicted at landfall. For Ivan, one radar unit in Gulf SHores had trouble finding sustained winds of hurricane force as the eye went by. However, what they do seem to find is that gusts in the storms reach and may exceed the predicted sustained winds, which may explain some of the haphazzard destruction by some storms.
    * For another perspective on the preperation from the storm, some seem to think NO relied to much on evacuation. After the 4 storms in florida last year, a study was again conducted on a NO worst case senario and found over 20k residents would not be able to evacuate, and when the Governer herself participated in a example of how high the water could go, they predicted that there could be 65k deaths. There fore, within the worst case senario, it is hard to prepare and then recover from such an event. One of the speakers said that in some ways we just have to except that we cant do everything, thats why we call it the worst case senario. however, he also said that knowing how many couldnt evacuate and the realiability put on evacuation led to the suffering in the superdome, which should have been planned out MUCH better.
    * An interesting topic covered was the fact that it was basically all the poor that were left in the storm. It is found that the poor will always be the ones stuck in the most vulnerable areas becuase the rich know to avoid them. This means, that even though NO pop of poor was mostly black, there should be no evidence of racism when dealing with them. Whether white or black, the poor were stuck in the situation, which is a leadoff and in to what i discussed earlier about evacuations. However, becuase of what happened and how the media covered it, one impact of katrina could be a new surge of bad race relations in the United states.
    * Another problem with preperation for MIss and LA was what the cities priorities were before hand. After camille, these cities knew what damage could be cuased and could have done things in advance to prepare for another such disaster. However, these cities chose to focus on supporting things like the oil industry and gambling, and therefore any blame on the president for not preparing the cities is ridiculous.
    * The future. The speakers here seemed to poo poo the idea of global warming in some ways. Until 2004, the decades before hand for the past 30 years had been well below in average of major hurricanes then in the 50's and 60's, and especially back in the early 20th century. AN upsurge in teh next 50 years of storms could be due more to climilogical change and not invovle global warming. However, models and simulations they use show that hurricanes will continue to get stronger, and that in 50 to 70 years we may need a "cat 6" definition. They say wind speeds on average for major storms could increase by as much as 15% or more, and pressures could fall below 870mb.
  5. uncle janko

    uncle janko member

    Uh, ditto to the earlier stuff, and thanks to Michael for the science stuff.
  6. tcnixon

    tcnixon Active Member


    I promised some of you that I would keep you in the loop. Seems easier to do it here.

    Elizabeth left this evening for Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She will be working in health services (which includes mental health) for the Red Cross. Because she is a social worker and a school psychology graduate student, this makes sense. She will also use her American Sign Language as necessary.

    She's flying all night. It's really difficult right now to get from here (Fresno, CA) to there. She actually has to fly into Lafayette and take the Greyhound to Baton Rouge. She flies from here to Los Angeles to Atlanta to Lafayette.

    If anyone knows Baton Rouge, she will be working, eating and sleeping in the "old Walmart."

    An amazing woman.

    Tom Nixon

Share This Page