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Editorial - In the same boat

Monday's closure of local schools by authorities in connection with approaching Hurricane Danny has been queried by some. They wonder if it was really necessary to decide this so soon on Friday, while the storm is not expected until after the weekend.

However, it must be kept in mind that the teachers and other staff as well as the students and their parents deserve ample prior notice so they can make alternate arrangements. What's more, many schools are concentrated in the Saunders/South Reward/St. Peters cul-de-sac, where traffic is already congested under normal circumstances during the early morning and afternoon hours when most schoolchildren are respectively dropped off and picked up.

It's also a kind of valley that gets the rainwater runoff from the surrounding hills. Experience has taught that flash-flooding can be severe in the area, particularly when trenches become blocked by debris, and two persons actually died there some years ago during a downpour that was not even qualified as a tropical system.

The other notable emergency measure was the establishment of maximum prices for storm-related supplies through the rest of the Atlantic Hurricane Season that ends on November 30. While the announcement probably came rather late for people who duly took their precautions in a timely manner as repeatedly advised, it was no doubt appreciated by those still seeking items to help safeguard life and property.

The control aspect might a bit tricky, especially when stores in question are full of persons busy rushing through their last-minute preparations. However, one would hope local businesspeople do "have a heart" and won't try to take unfair advantage at the expense of their compatriots in need.

With the stress that usually accompanies such situations, it's generally a good idea to have as much patience, understanding and compassion as possible. After all, everybody on the island is in the same boat and will have to deal with the aftermath together.

NOTE TO OUR READERS AND CLIENTS

There will be no The Daily (or Miami) Herald on Monday, August 24, because Hurricane Danny is expected in the local area as a tropical storm Monday morning. This decision was taken with the safety of our personnel in mind, especially the overnight crews in charge of printing and distribution. The office is also closed on Monday. The paper of Tuesday, August 25, will be published as a combined edition, while the weekly Health & Beauty supplement is now scheduled to appear on Wednesday, August 26.