By Nadin Abbott
November 3, 2012 (San Diego) -- The East Coast has been battered by Hurricane Sandy, which caused dramatic damage. Many of us in sunny San Diego may believe our only major risks are earthquakes and wildfires. But our region is not immune to hurricanes. The first recorded major hurricane to hit San Diego County was 1858. Then in 1976, Hurricane Kathleen reduced I-8 to rubble, washed out a railway and destroyed a bridge in San Diego’s East County, causing major flooding as far east as Ocotillo in Imperial County. View photos of Hurricane Kathleen's damage from a book written by a CalTrans engineer.
Wikipedia lists several tropical storms and hurricanes that damaged Southern California and Arizona. Moreover, with climate change,storm tracks are slowly moving north from Mexico, so we are at increased risk. Regardless, you should be ready for a disaster. Government authorities have warned for years that people need to be ready to be on their own for 72 hours. This is a general civil defense recommendation not limited to the United States.