Superstorm Sandy… a setback for science

It was with great sadness I read the news last week of the devastation that Hurricane Sandy caused by ripping through the East Coast of USA. I was horrified to read about the thousands of mice that drowned at New York University. I know this is immaterial compared to the human lives effected by Sandy but this event resulted in a major set back for science. Reports suggest almost 8000 cage of mice were killed when the basement of the university was flooded when Sandy engulfed New York. I think the biggest issue is to understand why so many animals were kept in a basement in a flood zone. This seems absurd. What make it more absurd is that this has happened before, during Hurricane Allison and Hurricane Katrina. Surely following any incident like this something should be done to prevent this reoccurring. Is it time that regulations are put in place to prevent this from happening again in the future? Shouldn’t this be a vital part of the animal care guidelines issued by the National Institue of Health. I hope some lessons are finally learnt from this event and a similar scenario doesn’t occur again in the future.