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Natural Disasters

Essay by   •  June 28, 2011  •  Essay  •  401 Words (2 Pages)  •  2,167 Views

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Having been a resident of Cook County Illinois for almost my entire life I have seen my fair share of natural disasters occur in an around my community. Just recently I have survived the great Chicago blizzard of 2011 which had a catastrophic effect on businesses and thousands of individuals in Chicago's Cook County and its neighboring areas. Although a horrific experience this was too many, this is just one of several hazards that are likely to affect Cook County Illinois in the coming years. As county emergency manager it is my job to complete a risk assessment of all natural disasters that can affect my county and implement emergency contingency plans in the event these disasters should occur. The top five hazards I have identified are blizzards, floods, tornadoes, hailstorms and raw sewage spills.

Geographically Cook County encompasses a large population of the Chicago land area. "Currently, Cook County houses approximately 5.5 million people" ( making this county the heaviest populated and the largest in land in the state of Illinois. Cook County is also located right near the freezing waters of Lake Michigan and "averages temperatures from the mid to low 20's in January and February which are highly conducive for blizzards and hailstorms to occur. To the mid 70's and 80's in July and August with average precipitation of 34 inches per year which are favorable conditions for massive floods, sewage spills, hailstorms and tornado weather to transpire." (

It is the potential impacts as well as the cascading effects with respect to all these disasters that have prompted me to identify them as being the most hazardous to effect this particular area. With such a large population to account for it is imperative to make sure that all efforts to prepare, mitigate and recover timely are preeminent. Any one of these disasters can not only affect individuals but it can also affect the global economy on a larger scale. Chicago's Cook County is a leading conglomerate of big businesses', many companies conduct and house their organizations here and disasters like this can cause detrimental effects to the labor force and economic state of the city by potentially shutting down businesses for extended periods of time resulting in low productivity levels and the inability to transport vital resources to surrounding communities who depend on Cook County for aid.






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