Governments need to pay more attention to the costs of false warnings. It’s not that this has not been said before. But now we have real evidence from the region. Gulfnews: Cyclone victims ignored repeated warnings A false tsunami alert two months ago led thousands of Bangladeshis to ignore warnings as Cyclone Sidr approached, costing many lives, villagers and officials said on Tuesday. “This time we did not take the number 10 danger signal seriously because the government has been issuing these warnings quite often.
It appears that early warning and evacuation were effective in coastal Bangladesh. With so much attention focused on tsunamis, it is important not to neglect this very real hazard. PS: Now with reports coming in that deaths will exceed 1000, judgment on the efficacy of warning and evacuation will have to be reserved. While one death is one too many, we must remember that 300000-500000 died in the 1970 Bhola cyclone which hit, the coast on November 12th. The fact that casualties will be be counted in the 1000s and not 100,000s is progress.