SPSCC students discuss Hurricane Sandy response

When Hurricane Katrina battered the Gulf Coast in 2005, the media talked about it for months after it happened, but many argue Hurricane Sandy hasn’t received the same amount of attention.

Hurricane Katrina had winds up to 125 mph, while Hurricane Sandy only had 94 mph. However, Sandy’s diameter stretched to 940 miles, as opposed to Katrina’s 400. Sandy had fewer deaths, but it still affected many, and the cost of property damage will be felt for months to come.

The storm was devastating and flooded many homes on the East Coast, so why do people say it isn’t receiving very much attention?

Student Victoria Blunt suggested that the Hurricane Sandy coverage was overrun by the election. She said that once people stop talking about a particular topic, it is hard to bring it back. Although Blunt doesn’t know anyone directly helping the victims of Hurricane Sandy, she said her church was working with a disaster relief fund.

Student Garret Peck also said that the lack of coverage could have been due to the election. He said a lot of variables went into the reasoning behind less coverage.

“Global warming is making natural disasters like this more common, and with the bad economy, perhaps people are more apt to look after themselves rather than others,” Peck said.

He said that people are still saddened by these disasters, but they’re only willing to spend a small amount of time thinking about things that they can’t do much about.

Student Kim Nyugen suggested that since the hurricane is on the East Coast, people here aren’t paying as much attention to it because it doesn’t affect them very much and student Robbi Arrington said that perhaps people don’t realize how much damage really occurred, and that they just see it as no different than a big rain storm that we have in Washington.

Student Andreas Dettling suggested that Hurricane Sandy didn’t appear to be as devastating as Katrina, so people lost interest in the matter.

“The flooding in New Orleans made Katrina look horrific and left millions homeless, but the pictures of Hurricane Sandy – a few cars completely submerged in water in a ditch, another of people kayaking in waist deep water, and one of a few destroyed houses – were less severe,” he said.

Dettling also said that perhaps the updates on the hurricane weren’t getting many views, so news sources stopped talking about it so much.

Student Aubriel Kepler suggested that the reason that people aren’t talking about Hurricane Sandy as much as they talked about Hurricane Katrina because this time, there was more preparation.

“You heard about Hurricane Sandy before it happened,” Kepler said.

Although there was preparation, houses and land were still damaged. Kepler’s friends and family who live on the east coast evacuated their houses.

Kepler said people talked about Katrina for years after it happened, and that there were many charities collecting donations to help victims. For Sandy, people have stopped talking about it already.
“It’s not in the headlines anymore. If you want to know about the recovery, you have to look it up,” Kepler said.