Interoperability During Disasters: Lessons from Tragedy
More than 600 people were rushed to Las Vegas hospitals after the shooting rampage at a country music festival on October 1, some of them arriving in the backs of pickup trucks. “It was like we were in a war zone,” a trauma surgeon at University Medical Center of Southern Nevada told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The injured were shot, trampled, or hurt jumping over fences at the late-night event, attended by many people from out of state. These patients, of course, were hardly in a position to supply the health records that can be vital for emergency treatment…
Library plays a pivotal role during emergencies
There’s a synergy that takes place in our town during times of emergency, and it doesn’t happen by chance. It’s the result of thoughtful preparation between town departments, and it was tested during the recent power outage.
Emergency preparedness may not come to mind when thinking of library services, but it’s a growing role for our profession – and one we take seriously. In 2011, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recognized libraries as essential organizations during times of disaster. There are endless examples of libraries across the country mobilizing to support their communities – from serving as command posts for firefighters in California, to bunkering in place to provide public information updates in Florida.
The outage was an opportunity for us to put our preparedness skills to work in support of our community. We were fortunate to have power, which quickly positioned us as a location for shelter and connectivity.
On Day 1, every seat, study carrel and public computer station in the library was occupied. Extra power strips were purchased for (almost) every outlet and were quickly filled with all manner of charging cords. Our meeting and conference rooms became charging and work stations…
Natural Disasters in Australia to Cost A$39 Billion a Year by 2050
Natural disasters in Australia are forecast to more than double in economic cost to around A$39 billion (US$29.5 billion) per year by 2050, according to a new report by the Australian Business Roundtable for Disaster Resilience & Safer Communities.
The report, which examined the costs of natural disasters in each Australian state and territory, revealed over the past 10 years to 2016, the total economic cost of natural disasters in Australia averaged A$18.2 billion per year, equivalent to 1.2% of average gross domestic product.
In real terms, the total economic cost of natural disasters is forecast to grow by 3.4% per year, double by 2038 and by 2050 reach A$39 billion per year, the report added.
Queensland has been the most disaster-prone state over the past decade. The total economic cost for Queensland over the past 10 years to 2016 has averaged A$11 billion per year, or 60% of the national cost over the same period. Flood events accounted for 66% of the cost, 25% due to cyclones and hail and storms 6% and 4%, respectively.
By 2050, the total economic cost of natural disasters in Queensland will reach A$18 billion a year, a growth rate of 3.3% per year.
The Australian Business Roundtable for Disaster Resilience & Safer Communities was formed in 2012 to influence public policy via evidence-based reporting on the unsustainable cost of disasters on life, property and the economy. The members include senior management of various organizations including Munich Re, IAG, Australian Red Cross, Investa, Optus and Westpac.
“Natural catastrophe losses remain largely uninsured worldwide — even in highly developed markets such as Australia and there is a considerable gap between economic losses suffered and the amount covered by insurance…