Thursday, April 5, 2012

Come again?

Did the Fort Worth Star-Telegram Editorial Board just criticize the former Fort Worth Star-Telegram Editorial Board?

Did they say the lone voice that spoke out was right?

Today that lone voice is still speaking out putting the citizens safety above the popular vote.

WHAT will the next Editorial Board say about the current one?  WHAT will they say about that same voice continues to speak out?   Maybe YOU should listen.

No one cares, until the next storm comes.  History repeats.

An Oct. 21, 1997, Star-Telegram editorial decrying Fort Worth's sporadic storm-warning system as not worth modernizing because it was "redundant" with other modes of communication made Editorial Board members cringe Wednesday when they read it.

Did the collective "we" really say, "The sirens [that] blare out the warning of an approaching tornado or hailstorm are about as useful today as fenders on a compact car"?

If anecdotal evidence is any indicator, the warning provided by sirens was remarkably useful Tuesday in keeping North Texas residents safe as tornadoes bore down on the region. Facebook posts and online comments credited Arlington's warning system in particular for alerting residents to the nasty weather headed their way.

Images of the damage leave one amazed that no one was killed and only injuries that weren't life-threatening were reported.

The Editorial Board's 1997 skepticism about updating Fort Worth's siren system was shared by then-Mayor Kenneth Barr and other members of the City Council who thought money would be better spent on a traffic light system that expedited firetrucks getting through intersections.

Then-Councilman Clyde Picht was the lone voice calling for additional and more reliable sirens.

Talk about the storm-warning system quieted down -- until the March 28, 2000, tornado upended lives and businesses in downtown Fort Worth before flattening homes in southeast Arlington and southwest Grand Prairie. Five people died and more than $450 million in damage was reported.

By 2003, the Fort Worth council had approved $3 million to upgrade and expand the city's sirens.

Read more here: Broad-based storm-warning systems proved their value during North Texas tornadoes

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