July 3rd, 2020


Irma reminds us of our limits

 David Von Drehle

By David Von Drehle The Washington Post

Published Sept. 11, 2017

Irma reminds us of our limits
	Matt McClain for The Washington Post

On Sept. 8, 1900, a hurricane drove 15 feet of storm surge over the thriving city of Galveston, Tex., maximum elevation 8.7 feet. At least 6,000 people were killed in what remains the deadliest natural disaster in U.S. history. Most of them had less than a day's warning that a storm was approaching and had no inkling of its power.

I thought of that when I read a report by The Associated Press as a storm of similar intensity rolled over the coast of Cuba and headed toward Florida.

The AP quoted a businessman from St. Petersburg, Florida, who was irritated that Hurricane Irma was headed toward his town and not toward Miami as predicted.

"For five days, we were told it was going to be on the east coast, and then 24 hours before it hits, we're now told it's coming up the west coast," the man complained. "As usual, the weatherman, I don't know why they're paid."