World 'Knew' About Cyclone, Expert Says

Burma says it warned citizens 5 days before landfall
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted May 9, 2008 9:20 PM CDT
World 'Knew' About Cyclone, Expert Says
Residents of Yangon walk past downed trees Tuesday.    (AP Photo/Democratic Voice of Burma, HO)

Burma says it warned its people of Cyclone Nargis 5 days before landfall, when it learned of the storm over news wires—but one expert believes Burma's media outlets were too primitive to spread the message. With Burma's death toll as high as 100,000, Newsweek talked to a global weather analyst about the warning that failed to reach Burma's people.

“You have to have infrastructure to get information like this out,” said Paul Drewniak, the manager of the Global Forecast Center. “It's pretty much the media outlets. And that's why it's so unsettling in (Burma), because this was a global news story. You would think the media there would have at least had a high-level notice this was coming.” (More natural disaster stories.)

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