Saturday, April 20, 2013

Explosions

Over the past week the news has been dominated by things blowing up. In Boston, explosions at the Marathon killed three. In Texas a fertilizer plant exploded, killing at least twelve (maybe more). Both are tragedies.
America will react quite differently to the two explosions. One is terrorism, so the government will spend billions in hope of preventing such a thing from happening again. The other is called an "industrial accident", and will most likely have absolutely no impact on the federal budget. Can't be spending money on that evil 'government regulation' that 'kills jobs' when we have a deficit.
As a society, we have odd priorities. Terrorism is hard to predict, and therefore hard to prevent. Whereas the risks involved in producing fertilizer are quite well known. Actually, the regulations already exist. But due to a lack of funding, there's almost no enforcement. The plant in West, Texas, was last inspected in 1985, and violations lead to a fine of $300. No word on if they fixed any of the problems. This explosion could have, and should have, been prevented.
Yeah, public safety funding could be spent a lot more effectively.
Added: Go read  More Texas-Sized Hyprocrisy, Disaster Edition over at Zandar Versus The Stupid . It's worse than I made it sound.

3 comments:

BBC said...

I’m not the only one questioning why fools would live next to a fertilizer plant that should have been a mile out of town. I’d never live next to one, I didn’t get old by making poor choices about where I lived and worked. And for that matter, even when choosing campsites. Life is risky enough without making bad choices and trusting officials of plants like that when they assure you that things are safe, plants like that have blown up many times.

I hope that wisdom prevails and they don’t rebuild next to that plant if it is rebuilt, there needs to be a buffer zone, or Darwin will win again.

Repeat after me, “I live next to a fertilizer plant and I think I’m intelligent.” Those who do not remember history, or choose to ignore it, are doomed to repeat it. Wise up, people.

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