We talked yesterday about the horrifying coincidences surrounding the devastating tragedy on Maui. But one thing that I can’t get out of my head is the fact that, in this case, many of the decisions made by the authorities were NOT in the best interest of people trying to survive the fires. You can’t just blindly obey the authorities during a disaster if you want to live.

The thing that particularly stands out to me – the thing that could affect any of us in a wide variety of emergencies on a one-to-one level – is that there were barricades meant to prohibit people from evacuating on certain roads away from the fires.  The people who bypassed the barricades survived. Many of the ones who turned around have not yet been found or have perished.

The AP reports a chilling story:

As flames tore through a West Maui neighborhood, car after car of fleeing residents headed for the only paved road out of town in a desperate race for safety.

And car after car was turned back toward the rapidly spreading wildfire by a barricade blocking access to Highway 30.

One family swerved around the barricade and was safe in a nearby town 48 minutes later, another drove their four-wheel-drive car down a dirt road to escape. One man took a dirt road uphill, climbing above the fire and watching as Lahaina burned. He later picked his way through the flames, smoke and rubble to pull survivors to safety.

But dozens of others found themselves caught in a hellscape, their cars jammed together on a narrow road, surrounded by flames on three sides and the rocky ocean waves on the fourth. Some died in their cars, while others tried to run for safety.

“I could see from the bypass that people were stuck on the balconies, so I went down and checked it out,” said Kekoa Lansford, who made several trips into town to look for survivors. What he found was horrible, Lansford said, with dead bodies and flames like a hellish movie scene. “And I could see that people were on fire, that the fire was just being stoked by the wind, and being pushed toward the homes.”

The road closures — some because of the fire, some because of downed power lines — contributed to making historic Lahaina the site of the deadliest U.S. wildfire in more than a century.

We want to think that in a life-or-death crisis, the folks in uniform waving us on or stopping us are there to legitimately help us. We generally assume they have our safety in mind and are privy to more information about the disaster than we have. We’d like to believe that if there’s a barricade, it’s for our own safety and that there’s some unknown, even worse hazard beyond it. Because of this, most of us would be prone to follow directions in such an event.

But what if that isn’t the case?

To be absolutely clear, I’m not accusing the people manning those barricades of deliberately inflicting harm on the people of Lahaina. I cannot be privy to their reasons, and they’re certainly remaining mum about the many catastrophic mistakes that were made.

The lesson here is that in life-and-death situations, we must use our own best judgment. We cannot always rely on the judgment of others. Whether bad decisions are made with evil intent or due to a lack of acuity, the end result is the same. People die.

I’ve written before that in an emergency, survival is about surviving. It’s not about figuring out the grand conspiracy or identifying the culprits plotting behind our backs. It’s about living through the horrible event and keeping your family alive. You can spend time thinking it all through later.

In the case of Lahaina, I can’t tell you why those barricades were placed where they were, that sent people turning back into the fire. I have spent many hours thinking of the anguish and terror of those who faced that inferno, and I can’t get that out of my head. People died who could’ve lived if it had all been handled better.

The fine line between blind obedience and  reasonable cooperation

When I lived in California, in the middle of wildfire country up in the mountains, we had two close encounters with wildfires. Cal Fire has an extraordinary crew of wildland firefighters, the brave men, and women who move to a camp near a blaze and spend every waking moment out there trying to get it under control. I never had a single doubt that their mission was first to save lives and second to save property. They did an incredible job at it, and considering the vast amount of acreage that has been consumed by wildfires over the past decade, it’s astonishing how few people have died. The ones who died either got caught by surprise by a rapidly moving blaze or ignored evacuation orders.

Source – Read More!

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End Times Prophecy Watch is an online ministry focused on sharing the Gospel and end times related news pertaining to end times bible prophecy. Our mission is to keep people informed on the times and season we are living in. We are focused on remaining obedient to our calling!

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