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2011년 5월 16일 월요일

미국 중부 지방 엄청난 홍수로 대피: Severe Storms Pound US

미국 중부지방의 홍수가 너무 심하여 막대한 피해를 내며 수많은 수재민이 생겼다.

미국이 택한 '악마의 선택'이란         2010.5.16


미국 지방정부가 홍수 피해를 줄이려는 조치를 두고 ’악마의 선택’이란 평가가 나오고 있다. AP, AFP 등 외신에 따르면 루이지애나 주 정부는 14일(현지시각) 200만명 이상이 거주하는 뉴올리언스와 배턴루즈의 피해를 줄이기 위해 남서쪽으로 물길을 돌리는 작업을 시작했다.

미국 정유시설의 10% 이상이 밀집한 두 도시를 보호하기 위해 인구 2만5천여명의 모건시티와 후마를 희생하기로 한 것이다.

현지 주 정부는 대(大)를 위해 소(小)를 희생할 수밖에 없는 극단적인 선택을 했고 현지 언론은 이에 대해 ’악마의 선택’이란 평가를 내렸다.

악마의 선택이란 마이클 샌델이 ’정의란 무엇인가’란 책에서 던진 질문과 큰 공통점이 있다. 질주하는 전차의 기관사가 인부 5명을 치고 갈 상황에서 인부 1명만 희생시킬 수 있는 비상선로가 있다면 방향을 트는 것이 옳은 것인가 하는 것이다.

무인도에 10명이 표류했을 때 1명을 죽여 나머지 9명을 살릴 수 있다면 그렇게 하는 것이 옳은 것인지에 대한 질문도 이와 유사하다. 이런 상황은 4자 성어인 ’고육지책(苦肉之策)’과도 맥을 같이한다.

삼국지 고사에서 유래한 이 성어는 자기 몸을 상해가면서까지 어쩔 수 없이 꾸며내는 계책이란 뜻이다.

악마의 선택이란 표현은 이같이 생명을 희생시킬 수 있는 극단적인 상황을 가정한 것이어서 현재 미국이 처한 상황과는 약간은 차이점이 있다.

피해 최소화를 위해 물길은 틀었지만 주민들을 미리 소개해 인명 피해로까지는 이어지지는 않을 것이기 때문이다.

그럼에도 5만명에 달하는 모건시티와 후마 등의 주민들은 농경지를 잃고 정든 마을을 빼앗기는 피해를 감수해야 한다.

미국 정부는 이들이 입게 될 피해를 충분히 보상할 방침이지만 희생을 강요당한 이들의 불만까지 충분히 잠재울 수 있을지에 대해서는 의문이 제기되는 상황이다.

루이지애나 주민들, 대거 대피        2011.5.17    


미 육군 공병대는 인구 밀집 및 산업중심지인 루이지애나 주도 배턴루지와 뉴 올리언스의 침수피해를 최소화하기 위해 뉴올리언스에서 북서쪽으로 184㎞ 떨어진 곳에 위치한 모간자 배수로의 수문 2개를 14일 38년만에 처음 개방한데 이어 15일 7개, 그리고 16일에도 2개를 추가로 개방하며 미시시피강의 수위를 조절하고 있다.

루이지애나 주정부 당국은 다만 모간자 배수로 수문 개방으로 인해 물줄기가 남서쪽의 아차팔라야강 쪽으로 돌려지면서 모건시티 등 ‘케이준 컨트리’ 지역과 호마시의 침수가 예상됨에 따라 침수 예상지역 주민들에 대해 대피령을 내리고, 주방위군과 경찰을 동원해 가가호호 방문하면서 주민들의 대피를 당부하고 있다.

세인트 랜드리 패리쉬의 경우 750여명의 주민들이 거주하는 크로츠 스프링스 마을을 비롯해 관내 주민 2천여명에게 16일 무조건 대피령을 내렸고, 일부 지역은 자발적으로 대피해 줄 것을 당부하고 있다.

배수로 개방으로 루이지애나주 중남부의 세인트 마틴 패리쉬 마을이 잠기기 시작하는 등 아차팔라야강 주변 지역의 침수가 본격화됨에 따라 지역에 남아있던 주민들도 가재도구를 차량과 트레일러 등에 싣고 인근 친척집이나 호텔 등으로 대피했다.

루이지애나 주정부는 앙골라 주립교도소도 침수가 예상됨에 따라 3천500여명의 재소자들을 다른 곳으로 소개했고, 내처즈강변에 있던 해안경비대 사무실도 폐쇄하고, 경찰관들은 소형선박에서 선상 근무를 하도록 조치했다.

바비 진달 루이지애나 주지사는 모간자 배수로가 개방됨에 따라 강물이 흘러가는 선상에 거주하는 2천500여명의 주민과 2천여개의 건축물이 침수피해를 받게될 것이라면서 인근 지역 주민들까지 합하면 모두 2만2천500여명이 침수피해를 당할 것으로 보인다고 말했다.

진달 주지사는 이어 아차팔라야 강 주변의 농작물 경작지도 대규모 피해를 당해 농업분야 피해액만 3억달러 이상에 달할 것으로 추정했다.

재난 전문가들은 모간자 배수로의 수문개방이 수주간 계속될 예정이어서 미시시피강 하류 지역의 침수피해는 장기화될 가능성이 높다고 보고 있다.

지난 4월 중서부지역의 집중 호우와 겨울에 쌓였던 눈이 녹으면서 시작된 미시시피강 대홍수는 1937년 대홍수 이후 최대규모로 미주리, 일리노이, 켄터키, 테네시, 오하이오, 인디애나, 아칸소, 루이지애나, 미시시피 등 9개주에 큰 피해를 내고 있다.

이번 홍수로 중서부와 남동부 지역의 경우 이미 300만 에이커(1만2천140㎢)의 경작지가 침수피해를 입었다

Open Spillways Ease Mississippi River Flooding
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After farms replaced natural floodplains along the Mississippi in the 1800s, the U.S. built 2,200 miles of levees to act as engineered protection. The levees have allowed farms to flourish but not all are convinced that's the way to go. 

"Levees should be our last line of defense, not our first," American Rivers states. "Unless we restore our rivers and natural defenses like wetlands and floodplains, we will saddle future generations with increasingly disastrous floods."

Less floodwater than initially thought will end up swamping Cajun towns and farms, officials said Monday. That’ll make the difference between wet or dry for some, but others — those who live in areas where up to 20 feet was expected — will still see flooded property."The crests have been lowered modestly in a number of places," Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal told reporters after being briefed by the Army Corps of Engineers. As a result, fewer flood gates at the Morganza Spillway will likely have to be opened.
But the possibility of "backwater flooding" for areas not protected by levees and earthen works was still high, he added. "We are still looking at a very significant amount of water," Jindal said. "We know it's going to impact households. We know it's going to impact families."


The Corps reported that Mississippi River floodwater "is not rising as quickly in the (Morganza) Spillway as they expected because their projections used 1973 data, which is not specifically geared to this exact situation, and because of drought conditions absorbing much of the water, which were not factored into their projections," Jindal's office said in a statement.
That slight piece of good news didn't stop crews and remaining residents from last-minute sandbagging and levee construction.
In towns like Amelia, about 100 miles south of the spillway that was opened Saturday, crews worked around the clock to build earthworks and reinforce levees ahead of water expected to reach the area by Tuesday.
"I hope they know what they are doing," said Hue Tran, who was watching the giant dump trucks. The flooding earlier submerged parts of Memphis, Tenn., where President Barack Obama arrived on Monday to meet with impacted families before delivering a high school commencement address.
Other Louisiana towns, like Krotz Springs, Butte LaRose and Morgan City, also were making plans for severe flooding that could last for three weeks before the water works its way to the Gulf of Mexico. A hand-painted sign in front a deserted Butte LaRose home said it all: "My slice of heaven force-flooded straight to hell. God help us all."
In Stephensville, a small town near Morgan City, Ronnie Wiggins and his neighbors furiously filled sandbags to protect their houses. Wiggins had few kind words to say about the spillway's opening.
"It's all about saving Baton Rouge and New Orleans while they flood people down here," Wiggins said, pointing out that most people in his neighborhood did not carry flood insurance. "So I guess it's all about saving the rich and burying the poor?" he asked.
In Krotz Springs, which will be among the first towns to feel the flood's effects, Kathy Reed-Eason spent the weekend moving her parents' belongings out of harm's way.
"My mom was crying," Reed-Eason said. "Mom said she'd go look at the river, and get out of the house." About 2,000 people on Sunday were ordered to evacuate from St. Landry Parish, just south of Krotz Springs.
Waters Rising, But No Place to Go
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InteractiveFlooding 2011

Residents of Oak Glen Residential Community are assisted by rescue personnel as rising waters from a nearby creek forced them to evacuate their homes in Johnson, Ark., on April 25.

A rail service vehicle and a pickup sit stranded in floodwaters from the Black River south of Poplar Bluff, Mo., on April 25.

Four houses are surrounded by floodwaters from the Current River just outside Doniphan, Mo., on April 26. The area received several inches of rain in previous days

Kenny Back pulls a boat with his sister Jessica Capp and wife Theresa Back to collect belongings from their parents' flooded home on April 27 in Old Shawneetown, Illinois

Anna Mayhood leaped to safety from her vehicle after the Broad Street Bridge collapsed beneath it on April 27 in Moriah, N.Y. Authorities said flooding closed nearly 60 roads across the Adirondacks, most of them in Essex County, scene of some of the worst damage

Volunteers hastily build a wall of sandbags along Illinois 3 on May 8 in the community of Olive Branch

James Bindon waits for more loads of sand to be delivered to the riverfront in Vidalia, La., on May 9. Crews planned to use the sand to fill temporary levees in preparation for the predicted Mississippi River flood.

An explosion lights up the night sky as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers blows an 11,000-foot hole in the Birds Point levee in Mississippi County, Mo. on Monday. The breach lowered the flood levels at Cairo, Illinois, and other communities.
Levee blasted in desperate bid to save Town
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Floodwater from the Mississippi River is seen north of New Madrid, Mo., on Tuesday.

Tractors pump floodwaters over a levee in Tiptonville, Tenn., on Tuesday in a bid to divert some water.

Floodwater surroun
ds homes in Morehouse, Mo., on Tuesday. Heavy rains have left the ground saturated, rivers swollen, and has caused widespread flooding in Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky and Arkansas
Miss.River Flood Fears Prompt more Evacuation
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David Lucas, left, and Lauren Lucas, right, comfort Carla Jenkins, owner of Vidalia Dock and Storage Co., after deciding to evacuate her business in Vidalia, La. on May 3 due to the threat of the predicted Mississippi River flood.

Floodwater engulfs a home near Wyatt, Mo., on May 3, after the Army Corps of Engineers blew a massive hole in a levee at the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio rivers to divert water from the town of Cairo, Illinois. The diversion flooded about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland and 100 homes.

Homes on Mud Island that are usually high above the water level are met by the rising waters of the Mississippi River in Memphis, Tenn. on May 4
Mississippi Threatens Historic Floods
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Volunteers fill sandbags at the Pyramid Arena to prepare for rising floodwaters from the Mississippi River in Memphis, Tenn. on May 4. The National Weather Service is predicting a 48-foot crest of the Mississippi River on May 11.

Debbie Ricketts, left, and her Point Township, Ind., neighbors, Bill, center, and Hank Cox basked in the sun on their old grain bin cement foundation that they dubbed "Gilligan's Island," on the afternoon of May 4.

Rita Gieselman leads the way as Phil Vanover follows after checking on his home in the 100 block of Chestnut Street in Rumsey, Ky. on May 4.

Robert Hart, left, helps Oma Gardner remove furniture from her flooded home on May 4 in Tiptonville, Tenn.
Floods Hit Record Highs in Six States
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James Strayhorn carries groceries through a flooded neighborhood back to his home in Tiptonville, Tenn. on May 4. Heavy rains have left the ground saturated and have caused widespread flooding in Missouri, Tennessee, Illinois, Kentucky and Arkansas.

Mississippi wildlife agent Hugh Johnson walks past a dead whitetail buck in Greenville, Miss., on May 5. Johnson said herds of deer, coyotes, some wild hogs and other wildlife are swimming to Greenville because of flooding on the Arkansas side of the Mississippi River. This deer broke its neck when it tried to run through a chain fence.

James Dunn gives his grandson Caleb Walker a paddle boat ride down the middle of a flooded street near his home on May 5 in Metropolis.

Farmland is flooded by the White River near Des Arc, Ark., on May 5.

Jerry Brooks wades through his yard on May 6 in Bogota, Tenn. Heavy rains have left the ground saturated, rivers swollen, and have caused widespread flooding in Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Arkansas.
Swollen Mississippi Flows into Heart of Memphis
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Jonathan White and Leandra Felton wade through slowly rising floodwaters with items from their home May 7 in Memphis, Tenn.

Residents paddle a boat past houses being swallowed up by floodwater on Saturday, May 7, in Memphis, Tenn. Heavy rains have left the ground saturated, rivers swollen, and have caused widespread flooding in Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Arkansas.

Linda Casals leans over the Interstate 55 bridge crossing the Mississippi River to get a better look at flooding Sunday, May 8, in Memphis, Tenn.

A man takes a picture of a flooded mobile home park as floodwaters slowly rise in Memphis, Tenn., May 8.

A cell block is seen alongside an inner levee along the Mississippi River at Angola State Prison in West Feliciana Parish, La. on May 9. A convoy of buses and vans transferred inmates with medical problems from Angola, which is bordered on three sides by the Mississippi River.

(Left) Workers use a crane to remove some of the Bonnet Carre Spillway's barriers in Norco, La. on May 9 in anticipation of rising floodwater. The spillway, which the Corps built about 30 miles upriver from New Orleans in response to the great flood of 1927, was last opened during the spring 2008. Monday marked the 10th time it has been opened since the structure was completed in 1931. The spillway diverts water from the Mississippi River to Lake Pontchartrain.

(Right) The Bonnet Spillway as seen from the air.


Water covers a gravestone, May 9, in Luxora Ark. The town sits along the Mississippi River where the water level is currently higher than the level of the town causing the ground to be saturated and leaving nowhere for the water in the town to drain

A towboat pushes barges down the flood-swollen Mississippi River south of Memphis, May 9.

Floodwater is seen inside Peaches Bar on May 9 in Memphis

Floodwaters rise at the end of Beale Street in Memphis, May 9.

Water swamps a casino flooded by the Mississippi River in Tunica, Miss., on May 10. 
Byron Sitz looks at Mississippi River floodwater covering the intersection of Riverside Drive and Beale Street in Memphis on May 10.

Chaperone Dave Weber and West Delaware High School Seniors Scott Egemo and Drew Funke lift flood debris below the damaged Lake Delhi dam near Delhi, Iowa, on May 4.

This industrial facility was flooded by the Mississippi River in Memphis, Tenn., on May 10. The river earlier that day crested in Memphis just short of its 1937 record.

The Mississippi River in Memphis, Tenn., as seen on April 21, 2010 in the satellite image on the left, and during it's crest on May 10, 2011, at right. The river reached 47.8 feet, just under the record of 48.7 feet set in 1937. Mud Island river park can be seen in the upper right corner.

Workers look for minor imperfections to correct before pinning down high density polyethylene covering on the backside of the Yazoo Backwater Levee in Vicksburg on May 10. The cover will act as a barrier if overtopping occurs and will inhibit backside erosion of the levee.

Mobile homes sit in water as high as their rooftops near Watkins, Tenn., May 10.

Residents of Vicksburg, Miss., take advantage of the raised railroad tracks north of the city to fish in the Mississippi River flood waters late Thursday, May 12. The fishermen along the tracks were treated to the sight of a 10-foot long alligator swimming in the waters.

City workers transport sandbags past the Yazoo & Mississippi Valley Railroad Station on May 12, in Vicksburg, Miss. The historic station is near the Mississippi River but the rest of downtown is on a bluff above.

Flood waters of the Mississippi River threaten a large oil refinery complex in Baton Rouge, La., May 13.
 
Flood waters from the Mississippi River pour over a levee on the Yazoo River, a tributary to the Mississippi River, north of Vicksburg, Miss., May 13. Thousands of residents who live along or near the river from Illinois, Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana have been forced to evacuate, and thousands of acres of prime farmland have been covered by the record-setting rising waters
Despite the Dire Predictions, A Vow to Remain
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Clothes are seen bagged in anticipation of floods in Butte LaRose, La., May 14.

Water diverted from the Mississippi River spills through a bay in the Morganza Spillway in Morganza, La., May 14. Water from the inflated Mississippi River gushed through a floodgate Saturday for the first time in nearly four decades and headed toward thousands of homes and farmland in the Cajun countryside, threatening to slowly submerge the land under water up to 25 feet deep.

Arionne Ruffin, 7, pushes her cousin Josh Ruffin, 3, in a toy car while Alexis Rhodes, 8, plays in front of her family's home, May 15, in Bayou Black, La. The Rhodes, who have sandbagged around their home, purchased the house in February and are anxious about the impending flooding.

Houseboats are secured to a tree due to water rising on the Atchafalaya River, May 15, in Henderson, La.

Brittany Ryder, 11, looks on as family members clear out their house during a mandatory evacuation, May 15, in Melville, La.

Brittany Pearce, left, wipes her eyes while taking a break with Leanna Gresco after a long day of throwing sandbags in front of Pearce's grandparents' house in Stephensville, La. on, May 15.

Giant whirlpools the size of cars develop along the Atchafalaya River on May 15 due to the opening of the Morganza Spillway. Deputies warned people to get out as Mississippi River water gushing from floodgates for the first time in four decades crept ever closer to communities in Louisiana Cajun country.

A woman in Stephensville, La., ties sandbags on May 15 as people throughout the region race to protect their homes from rising floodwaters due to the opening of the Morganza Spillway

Brenda Hynum hugs her daughter Debra Emery as they watch floodwaters rise around Emery's mobile home in Vicksburg, Miss., on May 16. A sand berm around the trailer failed in the night and floodwaters from the rising Mississippi river rushed in. "We tried so hard to stop it. It goes from anger to utter disbelief that this could happen. I just want to go home," Emery said.

A street sign stands in the rising water of the Atchafalaya River on Monday, May 16, in Simmesport, La.

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