Hurricane Ian

Hurricane Ian   Wikipedia

Weather has a way of speaking to us sometimes with greater emphasis than initially understood. Climate change has been signaling to be careful where you live and not to fantasize that destruction will not hit your community especially if you live coastal and in a flood zone area.

Tuesday September 27, 2022 - Those with family and friends in Florida watched Hurricane Ian and prayed for the safety of loved ones knowing this record breaking storm would change the landscape of Florida forever. To live in coastal Florida is to live with the never ending danger of your home being swept away in the pages of history. Insurance companies have gone bankrupt or double their rates making it impossible for people to be reimbursed in the onslaught of storms that increase in intensity every year. Many Floridians never had insurance and will lose everything reminding me of the aftermath of the wildfires in California. These are often poor people - many seniors - who live in mobile homes where you can't get insurance.

Wednesday morning I texted with friends and family in Florida - the weather service announcing that Ian is the fifth most powerful storm to ever hit the US. On a beautiful autumn afternoon in Brooklyn I met my friend Diane. As we passed a Halloween display we couldn't resist taking a few pics. Along came three middle school students on their way home from school and joined in - reminding me of my teaching days. Increasing extreme climate change - developing into natural disasters - certainly are one of the learning lessons of society today - but on this day we all wanted a treat not a trick.

Back home I spend the rest of the day checking in with Florida relatives and friends coping with Hurricane Ian. Life aways seems to be about coping one way or another ... doesn't it?

Thursday: Most friends and all of my family report heavy winds and rain but no flooding or power outages in their areas. They were lucky. I'm still waiting to hear from my friend John.

Friday: Video: Aerial surveillance of the damage created by hurricane Ian in Florida reminds me of the Russian invasion of Ukraine

Saturday: My friend John lives in a mobile home retirement community in Bradenton called Swan Lake Village. He had fixed up his house and put it on the market a week ago. Today he texted:

80% of my community was either damaged or destroyed! It's a bloody nightmare! I am one of the lucky ones as I survived Ian with only minor damage to my house but I believe the storm weaken the structure. Lawn gone. No power. No water. No nothing. Cleanup begins. Going to find food and charge my phone.

Before Pics of John's House

Like most climate events of epic proportions - Ian's devastation goes beyond a natural disaster story into a human disaster story. Not only are homes, buildings, bridges and more destroyed, so too are the lives of people especially those on the margins whose homes, jobs, and health are now precarious having lost everything.

Florida is home to seniors who often do not have the resources nor energies to rebuild and now have nowhere to go. Sadly this is a story not just in the United States but globally due to climate change and war. John and I have talked about this many times which is why he wanted to sell and move out of Florida.

Climate events often pave the way for natural disasters

September 24, 2022 Hurricane Fiona made landfall near Whitehead, Nova Scotia as a post-tropical storm with sustained wind speeds of 103 mph.

September 26-October 2, 2022 ... ongoing earthquakes occurred in the Reykjanes Ridge a submarine section of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge close to southwest Iceland.

The Mid-Atlantic Ridge is rising which will affect everything connected to the Atlantic Ocean much as the broken Pacific Plate is stepping up earthquake and volcanic activity in the Pacific Rim and related.