Hurricane Isabel moved inland this evening. Despite dire predictions and massive closings, including the entire federal government in Washington, DC, once again this storm has proved that the weather wonks are Chicken Littles. A “catgeory 5″ this ain’t, that’s for sure. A little wind — 30 mph here in Northern Virginia — and a bit of rain, but hardly anything to get worked up about. Of course, I am writing this on a battery-powered laptop, as the electricity is out. Just a wee touch of adventure in an otherwise very forgettable hurricane.
The oughts have it. Terrorism, SARS, West Nile virus, and now blackouts. As Boston.com observed, last night’s outages affected a 9,300-square-mile area populated by 50 million people. That’s twice as many people and landmass as the great 1965 blackout, which was also caused by one of these “rolling grid” failures. Haven’t the engineers learned anything?