Hurricane Sandy Is Here

The worst is still ahead for Connecticut.

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Short Beach - Johnson's Beach at morning high tide.
Photo:Jan Ellen Spiegel
Hurricane Sandy Is Here
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Hurricane Sandy Is Here

This is going to be a bad storm, but it doesn't have to be personally catastrophic. There will be considerable loss of property, but loss of life and limb doesn't have to be terrible if people will get out of the way of the water.

Easy to talk about. The persuading can be hard.

People think of what they own as an extension of their physical selves. Damage to your house or car can feel like a blow to the body. So people tend not to want to be somewhere else when something bad happens to a house, which is for most of us more like a carapace, the outer shell of an insect.

So they won't move even when the water is rising. 

The other problem is the difficulty of getting people ready for the unprecedented. "You know that thing you've never seen before? This will be just like that." People tend to know about other times when things didn't turn out so bad...and today is probably not one of those times.