AMU Emergency Management Original Public Safety

Tornadoes and Their Ripple Effect on Local Economies

By Allison G. S. Knox
Edge Contributor

The American Farmland Trust has a wonderful motto: “No Farms, No Food.” This phrase underlines the fact that without farmers, supermarkets cannot provide fish, red meat, poultry, vegetables or any of the processed items that fill their shelves. 

Recently, an article published by the AgWeb Farm Journal explained that the Mayfield Grain Company was demolished by the recent tornado in Mayfield, Kentucky. The damages were extensive, but the full extent of the damage from the tornado has yet to be determined.

Related link: Administrative Failures: Their Effect on Disaster Management

The Ripple Effect of the Mayfield Tornado on the Local Economy

The destruction of the Mayfield Grain Company facilities will have a ripple effect on the local community. Feed companies in the area will be adversely impacted, making it more difficult for local farmers to feed their cows and other livestock. In addition, farmers will have a more difficult time handling the demands of running their businesses.

The lives of Mayfield Grain Company employees will also be affected, since they will have no income for the foreseeable future. Any organizations that do business with these employees and farmers are likely to see fewer customers and a dip in their profits. But it is too soon to see how the entire community will be impacted.

Related link: How Can We Lessen the Effects of Displacement after Disasters?

Maintaining Community Resilience

Community resilience will be key to helping communities such as Mayfield to quickly recover from this disaster. Community resilience, however, can vary based on the needs of each specific community. 

When it comes to businesses and the needs of farmers, the incident in Mayfield reminds us of the importance of protecting organizations during disasters. In essence, we need to contemplate better ways to help organizations and communities recover due to the ripple effect disasters like tornadoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, and hurricanes have on local economies.

Allison G. S. Knox teaches in the fire science and emergency management departments at American Military University and American Public University. Focusing on emergency management and emergency medical services policy, she often writes and advocates about these issues. Allison serves as the At-Large Director of the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians and as Chancellor of the Southeast Region on the Board of Trustees with Pi Gamma Mu International Honor Society in Social Sciences. Prior to teaching, she worked for a member of Congress in Washington, D.C. and in a Level One trauma center emergency department. Allison is an emergency medical technician and holds multiple graduate degrees.

Comments are closed.