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September 28, 2005


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In additional to disaster preparedness, you should look into disaster prevention, such as the safety of the state's chemical and nuclear plants. The explosion downriver was just a glimpse of what could happen.
The US Senate Homeland Security Committee is considering bills to require chemical plants decrease their risk. Senator Levin who is on that committee hasn't had much to say about it.

I agree with Megan, we need to ensure the safety of our infrastructure.

911 had 3,000 casualties and the recent hurricanes had another 1,000. Yet we face 500,000 casualties from the flu and are prepared to treat 120,000 and offer flu shots to 2,000,000. We hoard the small pox virus for some obsure reason (like wiping out a continent) and both the US and Russia have 2,000 nuclear warheads on hair trigger alert.

40,000 people will die from smoking this month. yet we fund our government with taxes from smoking, gambling and gridlock.

At the time of the first Earth Day in 1972, Chief Justice Warren Burger wrote that it would take an investment of 10 billion dollars to clean up our nations water system. 33 years later that amount might make a dent in SE Michigan.

Citizens must begin by making it crystal clear that we will not tolerate the sell off of our environment.

In case of dire emergency, follow your elected leaders, stick your head in the sand (or some other place)and pretend there's not a problem.

Here are the links to the plans for feeding of infants in emergency situations:
http://www.ilca.org/katrina/how.php (scroll down to "Distribute ILCA's Position Paper")
http://www.who.int/en/ (search emergency infant feeding)
These talk about breastfeeding as the way to ensure safe feeding in disasters, especially where water is contaminated or unavailable. They also talk about the ability of women to re-lactate (start to produce milk again even if the baby was previously weaned). They also ask for people with some level of expertise in breastfeeding to be part of response teams.
These should be part of emergency plans at all levels, since we know that babies who are breastfed through emergencies are more likely to survive them.

This was a really excellent show. It revealed the utter unpreparedness of the State's officials: unaware of UN standard, lack of any means to communicate with the public besides random placement of brochures (puhleeze let's not pretend a web site does the job), no education program in schools. Not mentioned was the State Legislature's continuing inability to fund a unified statewide communication method for first-responders even within Local Emergency Response Commands [LERCs] that are responsible for each site-specific emergency, such as the explosion at the chemical plant in Riverview, MI several years ago: during that one, the Wyandotte police radios could not communicate with the LERC radios, and the nearest major infrastructure was a County sewage treatment plant that was evacuated of all but the shift supervisor (who kept basic equipment running) that had only a cell phone.

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