New Orleans is sinking man,

and I don’t wanna swim!

Those prophetic words by the Tragically Hip are coming true this morning in New Orleans as Hurricane Katrina tears through the city.

Let us all hope that everyone comes out safe and the damage to New Orleans and the rest of the area in the path of Katrina is kept to a minimum.

6 replies on “New Orleans is sinking man,”

  1. This one looks like it might be as bad or worse than ’69 Hurricane Camille. Hopefully, the worst will be property damage and not loss of human life which in ’69 was several hundred lives lost.

    New Orleans is 6′ below sea level and the pumps holding back the Mississippi and Lake Pontecharain are OOOLD. Could be 20 or 30 foot deep if the sea surges into New Orleans. Glad all I have to put up with here in the midwest is tornados and blizzards.

  2. Well, I did survive the dreaded floods of ’93. Our city of 250,000 population went 12 days without city water after the water works was flooded one dark and stormy July Saturday night. The National Guard and lots of nice civilian volunteers saw to it that we all got as much water as we could carry away from the water stations. We used tea kettles to bathe for that loooong 12 days.

  3. Apparently eighty percent of the city is under water. Unlike other places hit by hurricanes, most of New Orleans is below sea level. The heat and sun will evaporate some of the water but it could be a long time before the city is habitable again.

    I am reminded of the great North Sea floods that struck Holland and prompted the construction of the Zuider Zee dike in the 1930s and the Delta Works in the 1950s. In each case, nobody took the threat seriously until disaster struck. Some engineers who had warned of the danger were prepared with plans to rebuild and improve defenses against storm surge. New Orleans and the surrounding area will need much higher and stronger sea walls now if it is to be safe again.

  4. Jane,

    I remember the ’93 floods (I was in Texas at the time). Glad you got through. On the way down to TX, I took I-10 and it has been eery to see the helicopter views of the highway submerged in places. I hope your city is better prepared for flooding and other trouble now.

  5. David

    Our home was far from a river or creek so we, like most of the residents in Des Moines, did not experience a flooded home but the loss of running water was very wearing on our nerves. Even so for most of the ordeal, the community spirit prevailed and we all tried to be patient and helpful to those worse off. The Chief of our Water Works, L D McMullan, is a local hero and a legend in water treatment circles. He was magnificent and worked a miracle to get the whole problem solved in a mere 12 days.

    Yes, the Water Works is much better protected now although it’s still on the river (cause that’s where the water is!) with much higher berms and flood control measures. Also, the downtown area is much better protected with flood gates, etc. It should never happen again but you never know.

    I sure wouldn’t want to be on the clean-up committee for New Orleans. That water is nothing but raw sewage now and it will be standing in the heat for quite some time. What a nightmare.

    I understand the refugees in the Super Dome are going to be evacuated to Houston’s Astro Dome. A lot of those people are elderly and frail. It seems an unimaginable predicament – no place in there own city can accommodate those poor people.
    This situation reminds me of Bangledesh.

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