Thursday, April 22, 2010
After. Thoughts. From Commissioner Tony Hill, FESA
Commissioner Hill with overseas disaster response team members. Photo courtesy of the NZ Defence Force.
“I didn’t know that Mother Nature could be like this. I had trained for it but to have it happen in our own back yard, I just couldn’t believe it. Cyclones Ofa and Val were nothing like this. Out of the blue like this. The amount of lives that were lost …If it had hit Apia, we would have lost so much more. We were lucky it was early hours of the morning. People were awake. People were evacuating. We were very lucky that it was only a very small percentage of Samoa that got hit. It’s a wake up call. Its telling us – hey, you’ve got to be prepared. Out of all this, we’ve been very fortunate, we’ve got a lot of equipment given to us by the Australians and New Zealanders when they were here helping us out… What it’s saying to me now, is that you’ve got the equipment and you’ve got to put it into place and be ready.” Commissioner Tony Hill, Fire and Emergency Services Authority, Samoa.