Man-Made Disasters

August 26, 2010

Global Voices Online writes about man-made disasters, and I couldn’t help myself. I had to leave a comment.

While reading the post at Global Voices Online, I was reminded of the floods in China and the recent earthquake there.

Xinhua reports that China mourns mudslide victims as relief operation continues.  The piece said, “At least 1,248 people have died and 496 are listed as missing.

I read in the Guardian (April 14, 2010), that a 7.1 quake hit Yushu county in north-west province of Qinghai killing at last 400 and injuring 10,000.

When my sister and her children joined me on Mt. Rainier more than a decade ago, I learned that more than two million people lived below this active volcano, which is overdue for an eruption.

Mt. Rainer overlooks the city of Seattle in the United States.

According to experts, if Mt. Rainier blows, the wall of mud and trees that would rush toward the ocean would be 700 feet high and reach the ocean in less than half-an-hour. 

Meanwhile, homes are still being built along that path of future destruction, and there is no way to to protect those homes and people who live there.

When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, the flooding was caused by man.  People built houses on land that has been sinking for decades. The government built walls to keep the water out but the walls weren’t strong enough.  More than 1,800 people died from that hurricane. In New Orleans, 80% of the city was flooded, and over 700 bodies were recovered there.

Why do people build in harm’s way?

See The WHO’s War on Tobacco, about another man-made disaster.


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. 

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