Assuming the quote is accurate, the Weather Service is lying. Weather prediction is not that accurate and even a catastrophic flood does not kill everyone. But it is hard to point out that people are lying when they are lying in a good cause without being accused of minimizing dangers or wanting people to die.
[Postscript, after the storm: "Ike killed at least two people in Texas and Louisiana." A lot more than two people chose to stay in Galveston.]
Meanwhile ... the Lancet reports that, worldwide, the child death rate has fallen by 28% since 1990. Breaking it down by region, "deaths in western and central Africa have fallen by just 18%; in sub-Saharan Africa the figure was 21%, while in eastern and southern Africa it was 26%."
How does BBC headline the story?
Beneath the headline, in boldface type:
"Progress in cutting the number of deaths among children under five is still 'grossly insufficient' in some parts of the world, Unicef has warned." The picture that accompanies it is of two black children, one crying and one looking grim.
The actual news is that things are getting better. But that is not the impression that the headline, the introduction or the picture is designed to give.
I switched from CNN to BBC as a source of online news in response to CNN's extraordinarily biased reporting of the FLDS case in Texas. BBC is not as bad—you only have to read to the bottom of the article to get the relevant information. To find out from CNN that not only was the phone call that set off the Texas raid a hoax, but the identity of the hoaxer had been known since a few weeks after the call was made, you had to follow links into the depths of their web site.
But BBC could be a lot better.