Each year, somewhere in our viewing area, we see a similar story play out:
"Mass flooding forces mass evacuations"
"Tornado destroys homes, residents have nowhere to go"
This situation produces several, subsequent narratives:
- The media usually has a narrative: 'people are in danger and need to be evacuated!'
- But sometimes the media has a different narrative: 'people are being forced to evacuate their homes!'
- The uninformed have a narrative: 'people are stranded and the government isn't helping!'
- Some sheltering organizations have a narrative: 'call us early enough and we can have shelters set up to receive evacuees, as long as they are not criminals, pet owners and they have insurance we can bill later!'
- Some residents in the impacted area have a narrative: 'I'm not leaving my ______, so I'm staying put!'
Clearly, there are many nuances to deciding, implementing or enforcing a mass evacuation.
Nuances aside, following are the rules that I see often violated in the rush to serve the victims of a disaster.