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Seawall Saved Port Arthur from the Worst

This truck in Port Arthur was overturned by Hurricane Rita's strong winds.
Paul Heltzel, NPR
This truck in Port Arthur was overturned by Hurricane Rita's strong winds.

Residents in Port Arthur, Texas, are thankful there was not more destruction in their town, which took a heavy blow from Hurricane Rita when it came ashore Saturday.

With an intact seawall assuring that a catastrophe would be avoided, there was still considerable damage in the town -- even the mayor's house burned, and the city will likely remain without drinking water and other basic services for weeks.

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Alix Spiegel has worked on NPR's Science Desk for 10 years covering psychology and human behavior, and has reported on everything from what it's like to kill another person, to the psychology behind our use of function words like "and", "I", and "so." She began her career in 1995 as one of the founding producers of the public radio program This American Life. While there, Spiegel produced her first psychology story, which ultimately led to her focus on human behavior. It was a piece called 81 Words, and it examined the history behind the removal of homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
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