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Five years after Katrina


Citaro

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Hurricane Katrina of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season was the costliest natural disaster, as well as one of the five deadliest hurricanes, in the history of the United States. At least 1,836 people lost their lives in the actual hurricane and in the subsequent floods, making it the deadliest U.S. hurricane since the 1928 Okeechobee hurricane.

 

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The hurricane protection failures in New Orleans prompted a lawsuit against the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) the builders of the levee system as mandated in the Flood Control Act of 1965. Responsibility for the failures and flooding was laid squarely on the Army Corps in January 2008, but the federal agency could not be held financially liable due to sovereign immunity in the Flood Control Act of 1928. There was also an investigation of the responses from federal, state and local governments, resulting in the resignation of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) director Michael D. Brown, and of New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) Superintendent Eddie Compass. Conversely, the United States Coast Guard (USCG), National Hurricane Center (NHC) and National Weather Service (NWS) were widely commended for their actions, accurate forecasts and abundant lead time.

 

Nearly five years later, thousands of displaced residents in Mississippi and Louisiana are still living in trailers. Reconstruction of each section of the southern portion of Louisiana has been addressed in the Army Corps LACPR Final Technical Report which identifies areas not to be rebuilt and areas and buildings that need to be elevated.

 

Over seventy countries pledged monetary donations or other assistance. Notably, Cuba and Venezuela (both hostile to US government themselves) were the first countries to offer assistance, pledging over $1 million, several mobile hospitals, water treatment plants, canned food, bottled water, heating oil, 1,100 doctors and 26.4 metric tons of medicine, though this aid was rejected by the U.S. government.

 

Two German Army Airbus planes landed in Florida with about 25 tonnes of food rations to be transported to the disaster area. Further planes were prepared. Germany offered airlifting, vaccination, water purification, medical supplies including German air force hospital planes, emergency electrical power and pumping services. The aid was ready to go on German air force and chartered planes. A team of specialists from THW (German federal agency for technical relief) were planning technical measures and logistics in close contact with local authorities. A team of 89 flood fighting specialists and 5 medical personnel were dispatched from Ramstein Air Base to Louisiana by the United States Air Force. They brought 15 high performance pumps (10 pumps with a capacity of 15,000 litres per minute and 5 pumps with a capacity of 5,000 litres per minute) and 28 vehicles. On Saturday, September 10 at 4:30 p.m., the THW started the first 15,000 litre pump at pumping-station No. 19. Three other 15,000 litres pumps followed. The drainage of New Orleans would have taken much more time if these pumps and the THW specialists had not been provided.

The Minister-President of the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate addressed a letter to the commanders of the American forces stationed in his state offering financial support to those affected by the flooding.

Another German Air Force cargo plane carrying several thousand military rations (MRE) was denied entry into US airspace since, according to US authorities, they were not certified BSE-free. This was disputed by German authorities, pointing out that they were BSE-free according to NATO rules, that US soldiers would eat them regularly during joint operations (e.g. Afghanistan) and that these meals fully complied to UN rules.

 

German THW in New Orleans

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GVER1169500671.jpgthwusaI02.jpgthwusaI12.jpgthwusaI16.jpg

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So Ciatro i assume in 2005, you were a teenager at age 16? What was the Television and Newspaper coverage like from Germany and Europe?

One of the saddest and tragic events in modern American History.:cry::)

 

The US media as a whole here used the Race, Class/Economic status on why many of the victims in New Orleans i.e. mostly people of Color and poor Whites were not shifted out of the city prior to the storm hitting.

 

What was not covered by the US media that much is that cities and towns Mississippi, Alabama and parts of Fla. mostly more affluent also were torn apart and a few more also died from Katrina.

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So Ciatro i assume in 2005, you were a teenager at age 16? What was the Television and Newspaper coverage like from Germany and Europe?

 

You don't want to know it, it was the same shock like the shock about bp's oil disaster in the whole world now. The headlines were like this: "Richest country in the world can't help their own people" That would never happen in Europe, even China has a better disaster managment. Sorry but this is just the truth. Sad!:cry:

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You don't want to know it, it was the same shock like the shock about bp's oil disaster in the whole world now. The headlines were like this: "Richest country in the world can't help their own people" That would never happen in Europe, even China has a better disaster managment. Sorry but this is just the truth. Sad!:cry:

 

I know what I about to say maybe controversial but frankly money talks and "BS" Walks in America and most of the world. Most of the Politicans in America only care about the poor during election time.

 

While sadly race is still an issue here and most of the world Citaro, 'green' aka money is the favorite color in the USA and makes difference if you are taken of or not. Money is the new "Jim Crow" aka Apartheid in 21st Century America and Planet and makes difference if you can own a house in Beverly Hills, Scarsdale, etc. or live in trailer parks or housing projects.

The only good Katrina did Citaro IMO, was that it exposed issues of race and money/social economic class status, most people in this country especially the media, did not want to discuss.

 

If those poor souls in New Orleans in 2005, no matter if they are a Black or White Person had money like Oprah or Bill Gates along with terrible infrastructure that caused the post storm floods(where most of the death toll in NO occurred from), the death toll would have been much lower.

You don't have to agree with my takes Guys but speaking from my view on Katrina.

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I know what I about to say maybe controversial but frankly money talks and "BS" Walks in America and most of the world. Most of the Politicans in America only care about the poor during election time.

 

While sadly race is still an issue here and most of the world Citaro, 'green' aka money is the favorite color in the USA and makes difference if you are taken of or not. Money is the new "Jim Crow" aka Apartheid in 21st Century America and Planet and makes difference if you can own a house in Beverly Hills, Scarsdale, etc. or live in trailer parks or housing projects.

The only good Katrina did Citaro IMO, was that it exposed issues of race and money/social economic class status, most people in this country especially the media, did not want to discuss.

 

If those poor souls in New Orleans in 2005, no matter if they are a Black or White Person had money like Oprah or Bill Gates along with terrible infrastructure that caused the post storm floods(where most of the death toll in NO occurred from), the death toll would have been much lower.

You don't have to agree with my takes Guys but speaking from my view on Katrina.

 

I agree with you:), the disaster had shown poverty, racism and violence. An incompetent government, a racist police a ruined infrastructure etc. The disaster of a society. The disaster had opened our eyes and it is very sad to see this in a western country, very sad and embarrassing for your gov, that even Cuba and Venezuela had to help New Orleans.

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It was the fault of the local government for not taking the threat seriously enough to have a mandatory evacuation. People thought those levees would hold up than to leave their homes. The pictures of those school buses under water shows how those people [without cars] could've been driven out [even against their will].

 

And don't give me that 'it's the US they should've been expected to take care of their mess' crap. Every disaster, the US does give relief in terms of aid and money. But they can't do it alone. It's a global effort. One country alone can't do the job. The bigger the mess, the larger the operation.

 

Katrina showed that small blunders from the local level affected things on a national level.

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It was the fault of the local government for not taking the threat seriously enough to have a mandatory evacuation. People thought those levees would hold up than to leave their homes. The pictures of those school buses under water shows how those people [without cars] could've been driven out [even against their will].

 

And don't give me that 'it's the US they should've been expected to take care of their mess' crap. Every disaster, the US does give relief in terms of aid and money. But they can't do it alone. It's a global effort. One country alone can't do the job. The bigger the mess, the larger the operation.

 

Katrina showed that small blunders from the local level affected things on a national level.

 

Disaster managment in the 21th century country is a national task, local managment doesn't matter. They had no right pumps and not enough so they have to flight in some from Germany. FEMA managment was a disaster in a disaster. People hadn't enough water to drink. Then, the infrastructure was to old, not just the dams, the whole infrastructure of the city. Then Police shoots at innocent people.

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I don't know how things works in your country, but here the local government should know how to manage their city better and then ask the Federal goverment where they needed assistance. The fact that the mayor and governor both sat on their asses than to do anything is where the problem occurred. How is the government supposed to fix things when they don't know where to start?

This is not a utopia world that you live in. It starts with the local authorities and then works up to the federal goverment.

The point that people simply thought the storm was going to blow over and the levees would hold up is the arrogance placed soley on the local government as they would know or should know more about their city than the federal government.

 

"Then Police shoots at innocent people."

 

Credible source? Otherwise I'm going to call this bs.

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I don't know how things works in your country, but here the local government should know how to manage their city better and then ask the Federal goverment where they needed assistance. The fact that the mayor and governor both sat on their asses than to do anything is where the problem occurred. How is the government supposed to fix things when they don't know where to start?

This is not a utopia world that you live in. It starts with the local authorities and then works up to the federal goverment.

The point that people simply thought the storm was going to blow over and the levees would hold up is the arrogance placed soley on the local government as they would know or should know more about their city than the federal government.

 

"Then Police shoots at innocent people."

 

Credible source? Otherwise I'm going to call this bs.

 

Honestly GC you do have a point that the local NO and State La. Governments with then Mayor Nagin blew it in preparing for and post Storm management. However the Feds (it both parties)also blew it by not upgrading the levees.

The Levees is a federal issue that bulit by the federal government since NO and the Gulf Coast is on national/international waters. The City of New Orleans and State of La. was suppose to handle local issues like transfering all of the residents out of the Hurricane and providing them with safety such as Police and Fire.

If people wanted to stay after the warnings before the storm hit, then have sign a contract waiving the local officals of responsibile and take care of those who want to leave.

 

The main Local New Orleans newspaper did an extensive piece several years before Katrina in which they interviewed experts. Almost all of the experts predicted a flooding disater like what happened in 2005 ,unless the levees were upgraded asap.

Sadly it did.

 

;)

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It was the fault of the local government for not taking the threat seriously enough to have a mandatory evacuation. People thought those levees would hold up than to leave their homes. The pictures of those school buses under water shows how those people [without cars] could've been driven out [even against their will].

 

And don't give me that 'it's the US they should've been expected to take care of their mess' crap. Every disaster, the US does give relief in terms of aid and money. But they can't do it alone. It's a global effort. One country alone can't do the job. The bigger the mess, the larger the operation.

 

Katrina showed that small blunders from the local level affected things on a national level.

 

They did actually have mandatory evacuations GC. For the last 2 days MSNBC has gone in dept to uncover exactly what happened. The LA government made it quite clear that everyone needed to leave, and asked for assistance from the Bush Administration which responded 5 f-ing days after the huricane had passed. Brian Williams reported from the Superdome during and after the disaster. Nobody came to their aide for 5 damn days!

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Well if they gave the order to move everyone, then what about all those school buses that were sitting under water when they could've been used to drive those people out? I'm not excusing FEMA here, but face it: this was a local issue that should've been done locally. If they needed additional resources, that's what the National Guard is for. Then you get the feds to take care of the rest.

From the looks of it, it seemed more like the local government did nothing and let the federal government take the blame for their own incompetence. I blame the local goverment first.

 

I'll put it this way: when a disaster is coming my way, I'm getting out before the feds comes to get me out. I'm not leaving my life in their hands.

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Well if they gave the order to move everyone, then what about all those school buses that were sitting under water when they could've been used to drive those people out? I'm not excusing FEMA here, but face it: this was a local issue that should've been done locally. If they needed additional resources, that's what the National Guard is for. Then you get the feds to take care of the rest.

From the looks of it, it seemed more like the local government did nothing and let the federal government take the blame for their own incompetence. I blame the local goverment first.

 

I'll put it this way: when a disaster is coming my way, I'm getting out before the feds comes to get me out. I'm not leaving my life in their hands.

 

Concourse are you aware that NO and the Gulf Region has among the highest # of poor people in the USA? You have some many of them disabled and seniors who can't just leave on just 24-48 hour notice like that.

 

Plus there was a small amount of brave souls who will never ever leave a hurricane even a Cat. 4-5 that Katrina was before it hit the Gulf Coast. Being frank, some felt that prior to Katrina, previous Hurricane warnings in NO was the media making it bigger than what it was.

 

Katrina was a pefect storm(no pun intended)in which everything went wrong. While now former NO Mayor Nagin deserve some blame I do remember watching a press conference 24 hours stating "This is the Big One Leave NO Now" as i paraphrase. 1 Day Notice for a Big City to leave is kinda of too late.

If I was him, I would done the order 3 days in advance and even if the storm misses the city, it's better to be late than sorry.

Again there was enough to blame for all levels of Government here from both parties.

 

Not to get too off topic but I read somewhere (forgot source sorry)that many cities/local governments and the Feds were still not prepared to handle crises from another Terror Attack like '9/11" to Cat. 3 and higher hurricanes and even 6.0 or higher earthquakes. What you guys think?

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Texas, had been hit by a storm just as bad, but never had the mass loss of life like NO did. Granted: it was after Katrina and they didn't have to worry about an entire body of water flooding the city. But point is if more was done on the local level, then maybe they could've saved some more lives. And like I said, there were buses there that sat underwater that could've been used to get people out than for them to gather mainly at the Superdome.

 

Those that foolishly decides to stay in their homes when such a storm is heading their way seals their fate. Like I said, if there's a major disaster coming my way, I'm leaving before the federal gov't comes by. I'm not waiting around for them to help me.

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This is not a utopia world that you live in.

 

Sorry, but a right disaster managment has nothing to do with an utopia.

We haven't hurricanes here in Europe, but some floods every year. I've never seen a disaster managment like this.

 

This was the UK Flood in 2007, it was the biggest flood in the UK of all times. Nearly the whole country was flooded, not just one city. The disaster managment wasn't perfect, but better than in Orleans.

533px-UK_Group_B_flood_damage_July_24_2007.png

 

"Then Police shoots at innocent people."

 

Credible source? Otherwise I'm going to call this bs.

 

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2010/02/24/ex-cop-pleads-guilty-katrina-police-shooting/

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Citaro

 

No country prefect and no country is ready for a natural disaster.

 

I've never seen that Americans had to help us in a natural disaster, because we hadn't no pumps or something like that.

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Texas, had been hit by a storm just as bad, but never had the mass loss of life like NO did. Granted: it was after Katrina and they didn't have to worry about an entire body of water flooding the city. But point is if more was done on the local level, then maybe they could've saved some more lives. And like I said, there were buses there that sat underwater that could've been used to get people out than for them to gather mainly at the Superdome.

 

Those that foolishly decides to stay in their homes when such a storm is heading their way seals their fate. Like I said, if there's a major disaster coming my way, I'm leaving before the federal gov't comes by. I'm not waiting around for them to help me.

 

And where exactly was the local gov. Supposed to get the money and people to operate these buses? There were hundreds, if not thousands of buses under water. They are still trying to rebuild their city bus fleet to this day! Sure, there is blame to be passed around on all levels of gov. But what you are failing to realize is the actual storm is not what caused the bulk of the disaster. It was the floods after the storm had passed. The lack of communication, organization, and resources is what contributed to the ultimate disaster. I'm sorry guys, but you need to look at the whole Katrina story from start to finish before you can form an opinion. How can a local and state gov. Do anything when all of their resources are under water? There is absolutely no excuse for the Feds taking 5 days to respond. There is also no excuse for the state to not pull other resources from other cities. You need to understand everything that happened before you can throw blame. You have to understand that the governments of LA and the USA could not have cared less about all those people. Everything began to unravel the second the storm was over. Everybody thought the disaster was over when it was actually just beginning. For years the gov of LA and NO were warned what would happen if a major hurricane hit. No one did anything!

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I'm saying they should've done this BEFORE the storm arrived. The local government seemed to have thought that the levees would've held up. Again Yes all levels are to blame, but the local officials were supposed to know their own city better than the feds. They can always get the feds to get more help if needed. How would the feds know what NO needed?

 

For years the gov of LA and NO were warned what would happen if a major hurricane hit. No one did anything!

And that proves my point. They did nothing.

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I'm saying they should've done this BEFORE the storm arrived. The local government seemed to have thought that the levees would've held up. Again Yes all levels are to blame, but the local officials were supposed to know their own city better than the feds. They can always get the feds to get more help if needed. How would the feds know what NO needed?

 

 

And that proves my point. They did nothing.

 

Again the local NO newspaper did an extensive story several years before Katina in which almost all of the experts interviewed predicted that the levees would 'fail' from a Hurricane Catg. 3 and Higher. Katrina was still a Cat. 3-4 (was a Catg. 5 at it's height)when it the Gulf Coast.

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My thoughts on this (at the risk of sounding like a heartless bastard) are that it's sickening that the US is so quick to send aid to every foreign country that has a disaster (tsunami, earthquake, etc.) but yet when it comes to aiding their OWN citizens they've completely dropped the ball.

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I've never seen that Americans had to help us in a natural disaster, because we hadn't no pumps or something like that.

 

 

That's properly cause your country has the food and supplys in case of a natural disaster as well you got the backing of the European union,am I right?

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That's properly cause your country has the food and supplys in case of a natural disaster as well you got the backing of the European union,am I right?

 

1. Right, in history there was never a big lack of supply in a disaster.

If the situation goes out of control, the european union send us aid, like the federal gov in the US, but this was never a reality.

Most european countries don't send the army allone, they've national disaster response teams, like the THW (Federal Agency for Technical Relief) in the photos. The THW has 84.667 rescue workers and every big city has its own base.

There was a perfect cooperation between the army, fire departments, the state police and the THW in the past.

Germany is a federal state, but we have a good cooperation between federal and local agencies. Because of this, a Katrina disater managment it would never happen here.

 

2. Also there is not a single city in Europe which has such a broken infrastructure and i'm not talking just about the dams. And the poverty and crime is still a problem in NO so there is no real progress for the city, that's sad, sad for your government and sad for your people who have to live in this city.

 

So, five years after Katrina we have to recognize that America has two big problems. 1. Lack of right disaster managment and 2. a social disaster, poverty, crime and racism. That's my european point of view.

 

That sounds arrogant, but it is just what i see and what i'm thinking. I hope my point of view helps you to help America to do things better. I think your country can more than your gov has to offer, if you were on moon: http://www.sp-usa.org

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It ok,your expressing your opinion from a European's prospective.

 

I agree,we should have done more and sending aid after Katrina,as well evacuating the poor to higher ground instead we send them to a football dome in the eye of the storm.

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