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Homeland Security: A Complete Guide 2/E, 2nd Edition by James Carafano, Mark Sauter

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CHAPTER 15UNDERSTANDING DISASTERS AND MASS EMERGENCIESFrom Earthquakes to Pandemics and Beyond

All my downtown is gone. My home is gone. My staff’s homes are gone. And we’ve got to find a way to get this to work and come to work every day and get this thing back on its feet.

Steve Hewitt, city administrator of Greensburg, Kansas

CHAPTER OVERVIEW

On May 4, 2007, the small town of Greensburg, Kansas, was hit by the equivalent of a weapon of mass destruction. A massive tornado touched down, racing 22 miles nonstop and staying on the ground 30 minutes. In its wake, some 95 percent of the town’s buildings were destroyed by wind damage and flying debris (which also caused a leak in a train tanker carrying ammonia). As the quote from City Administrator ...

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