Hurricane Irene rises concerns for our friends and neighbors who are potentially in harm's way. One redeeming grace, at least there has be plenty of time to prepare and evacuate for the hurricane. Of course, this means a disruption of work, school, and vacation plans. Many are preparing to be shut-in's for a few days. I would imagine many more still are going to be hanging out in some unexpected place, waiting for the storm to pass.
Earthquakes and tsunamis aren't so gracious to provide advance warning.
Colorado has a few natural occurring disasters, some we have time to prepare for, others well just happen.
The worst (at least to me) are wildfires. Most wildfires occur in the mountain areas where the trees and grass are plentiful and dry. Sometimes the fires are started by careless people, other times lightning is the cause.
Mountain residents are aware of the dangers and prepare for evacuation. The fire departments in Colorado do a good job of publishing wildfire prevention and evacuation procedures.
The first step in preparedness is to create a defensible space around your home.
Colorado State University offers a "Are You Fire Wise Notebook" that outlines the complete procedure for protecting both homes and humans in the event of fire.
Education, preparedness and common sense can save lives. Now is a really good time to start.