|The 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season summary map...|
The longer we get from the landfall of Hurricane Wilma back in 2005, the more people who live here will start to believe that it will never happen again. And, as people have moved here since that monumental 2005 hurricane season, they come unprepared for - and for the most part unaware of - the incredible power and danger these storms present.
But, just because it hasn't happened doesn't mean it won't again. I'd like to turn your attention to an appropriate, yet opposite analogy - the New York Jets of the NFL. The rabid fans who head to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey on autumn Sundays recall the glory days of 1969, when Broadway Joe Namath led his team against the heavily-favored Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III.
|Joe Namath leading the underdog Jets to victory|
|The sad Jets fans of today|
Surprisingly, it's easier to get Jets fans to show to the stadium in anticipation of some elusive wins than to get Floridians to prepare for the potential of a landfalling hurricane.
Somehow, we need to get our residents to understand that one day, the storms will return. Or the earthquake will happen. Or the wildfire will break out. And they have to take the steps to prepare today while we have the calm and time to make it happen. To harden their homes. To buy the necessary supplies.
After all, no Jets fan would want to be caught without their fan gear when the Jets return to claim their championship.
Tom Iovino, Public Information Specialist
Pinellas County, Florida