With their TVs, radios and computers left behind in storm-damaged homes or completely swept away, the survivors of Hurricane Katrina may be the least-informed about the recovery and relief operations currently underway in the Gulf Coast area. But a delivery of about 10,000 AM/FM radios – batteries included – from U.S. Northern Command may help alleviate that situation.I, of course, am pleased with Admiral Keating's idea since it's very similar to this. Of course, I would like radios to be distributed a little earlier, but this is an excellent step.
“The intent is to get these radios to the population so they can hear what’s happening,” said U.S. Army Col. Nick Buechler, USNORTHCOM’s Logistics and Engineering Division Interagency Chief. “The rest of the world is watching on CNN – but the local people can’t watch. As a result, they don’t know that help’s on the way.”
The survivors’ access to information became critical in the aftermath of the storm but was severely curtailed by hurricane-related infrastructure damage. In considering the problem, USNORTHCOM Commander Adm. Timothy J. Keating proposed providing radios to those living in the affected area. The contracting division of USNORTHCOM’s Logistics and Engineering Directorate accepted the challenge of providing those affected by the disaster with a means of “tuning in” to the recovery and relief effort.
“Not knowing what’s going on is the loneliest feeling in the world,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Lewis Thrasher, Chief of the USNORTHCOM Contracting Division. “People are desperate for information. This shipment of radios is just one small way Admiral Keating feels we can help.”