Another Plus Sign (A re-print of October 15th, 2004)

Now that things have quieted down in our Southeastern States to the point where recent hurricane damage can be assessed and repaired, an ancillary benefit of the patented storage and retrieval system can be evaluated. As the recent storms approached and evacuation orders were issued by civil authorities, those not in a position to comply with those orders were required to seek shelter wherever protective cover could be found. One of the humanitarian announcements given wide publicity was the offer from officials at the U.S.S. Alabama Memorial to open its doors to any and all who sought refuge from the onslaught of those impending storms. A number of local residents no doubt availed themselves of this thoughtful invitation, and these present day ancient mariners who opened their arms and their hearts to the those in danger deserve to be recognized and remembered.
Recall, if you will, that more than half a century ago hundreds of sturdy young men boarded a much younger U.S.S. Alabama (BB-60), and together, this ship and its crew conducted themselves admirably in naval campaigns aimed at assuring the security of this nation and its people. It comes as no surprise then, that this magnificent vessel and its not so young crew should once again take the lead in efforts to provide protection and shelter for those exposed. U.S.S. Alabama, one of the four innovative South Dakota-class battleships commissioned during World War II, is a 680-foot long, 35,000 ton steel structure built to withstand the most severe assaults, and in battle conditions and in typhoons as well, its walls (bulkheads!) shielded all those who manned this mighty ship. At the conclusion of hostilities the nation paid tribute to this great ship and to those men whose dedication and devotion to duty is still much in evidence. The walls of this mighty ship have yet again given protection and solace to threatened occupants. Par for the course.

The ancillary benefit mentioned above merits comment at this point. The coincidence should be noted that both the U.S.S. Alabama and the structure depicted in this website’s illustration are both 680 feet in length. Like the U.S.S. Alabama, these mobile storage and retrieval facilities, of whatever length, would be made available as Civil Defense Shelters during emergency situations. Although the designers had threats of terrorism in mind when designing this website, the administration building shown between the two mobile carriage sections would be made available to serve as temporary living quarters for several thousand refugees in any sort of emergency. The recent weather conditions along the Gulf and South Atlantic Coasts has prompted the design of units for use as additional shelters in these structures, and these specialized units will be on standby in those ports exposed to adverse weather conditions.

Because technology and reconnaissance provide us with advanced warnings of approaching storms, Mother nature’s assaults are somewhat manageable. There are no fail-safe methods as yet for predicting acts of terrorism, however, and concerted efforts must be directed to those dangers. Senator Schumer’s proposal was unacceptable because it was unworkable. It required time, and there is no time to spare in the present scheme of things. The scheme requires amendment.