Disasters don't just destroy human lives - they destroy the built-up worlds around us.
Take, for instance, Hurricane Sandy. It rose flood waters significantly around New York City, sweeping away the outer edges of Staten Island and knocking out vital power to Lower Manhattan. It also completely flooded many of the city's aging rail tunnels, and it could nearly have flooded out all of Penn Station, were it not for some triage on the part of Amtrak.
Surely there have been even greater infrastructure damages in modern history. Some of them have silver linings, though - don't forget that San Francisco's stunning waterfront is thanks to the '89 earthquake..
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