The Influenza Pandemic of 1918 (Natural Disasters)
In 1918, the deadliest virus in human history struck worldwidewith hardly any warning. A victim of the Spanish flu could wake uphealthy and fall down dead the same day. In the United States, somany people fell ill that schools and churches closed. There werentenough healthy doctors and nurses to care for the sick, or enoughhealthy gravediggers to bury the dead. When U.S. troops joinedWorld War I that year, they couldnt have imagined that moresoldiers would die from the flu than fighting. The Spanish fluclaimed between 50 million and 100 million lives globally in lessthan a year. Now, less than a century later, new strains of birdflu are killing people in Asia in much the same way. Are we on theverge of another deadly pandemic?