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Katrina reports from a local who stayed...


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I posted this already in another thread. But, I wanted all of you to see this. Just wanted to pop in and say thanks to all our UrbanPlanet friends for their wellwishes and support. Since NCB stayed in Covington, I can guarantee that he's without power. Not sure about Alon504. I'm fortunate enough to have internet access where I evacuated.

But, I figured that yall may want an update on my city after Katrina. I have contacted a family member who is an NOPD officer to get his feeling. He was in N.O. the whole time. They have had a briefing, and the news is bad.

First, the entire eastern part of New Orleans, commonly referred to as "New Orleans East" has been completely submerged under 8-15 ft. of water due to a break in the levee along the Industrial Canal approximately one block wide. It blew out and water rushed in at an extremely fast rate, trapping many people. Water levels reached ceiling level in most homes. Hundreds are trapped on rooftops and attics. Bodies have been reported floating in that area of the city. Casualty numbers are not known. However, it is feared that many more people may have drowned inside their homes and will not be accounted for until water levels recede.

Second, levees along Lake Ponchartrain were indeed topped. Lakeview, which is a suburb just to the north of downtown, and surrounding neighborhoods, is flooded with 4-6 feet of water.

Third, downtown is flooded with anywhere from 1-4 feet of water. Every downtown skyscraper has many windows blown out. Structurally, however, they seem to have fared well. Outer layers of the Superdome roof have peeled off, causing extensive leakage.

In St.Bernard Parish, in the suburb known as Chalmette and surrounding areas, the news is grim. According to the parish president, most, if not all of the 40,000 homes are submerged. Casualty figures unknown. He hoped everyone got out. No specifics here.

Conditions in outlying areas to the south of the city are not known. Flyovers will be conducted soon.

And lastly, the good news. Our beuatiful French Quarter seems to have fared well. It's slightly higher elevation saved it from flooding. And, it's density seems to have protected it from severe damage.

Again, I thank all of you for your support. I know that if NCB and Alon504 were able, they'd say the same. Please come visit New Orleans. We're always happy to have you, and we need you now more than ever. New Orleans will be back... better than ever. Thanks again.

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TSmith, thank you for the update. I am in the process of organizing some type of relief effort at work. If you hear anything regarding where to send any money, etc., please pass along when you can. I hope you, your family and your home fared well.

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Just out of curiousity, what's the French Quarter look like? I heard earlier (several hours ago) that it was spared from some of the flooding.


Well, believe it ot not, the French Quarter fared well. Also, the downtown area waters have receded in 95% of areas. So, this is good news for downtown. According to my cousin, some old brick walls are collapsed in the FQ, but only a few. He said the mosr disturbing part of damage to the FQ were the oak trees in Jackson Square. Some have just fallen over. An effort will be made to save these trees. I'll keep yall up to speed as much as my cousin's cell lets me.....

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Thanks for the update TSmith, glad you were able to make it to a safe place. The reports sound worse than I was hoping for, I expect the news from the Miss. coast will be bad too. The clean up maybe long and difficult, but New Orleans will be back. Best wishes to you and everyone down there.

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As of 1:30am central, things have taken a drastic turn for the worst. Another breach has occurred in the levee at the 17th street canal. The Lake is now pouring into the CBD and central city. Reports of water rising 1" every 5 minutes. Water reaching first-floor ceilings and rising. I thought the worst had passed. Now, downtown will flood, along with the French Quarter. This is horrible. Pray for N.O.

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I was talking to a person at our church, and the disaster relief part of the Presbyterian Church in Charlotte, is going to raise money for now, and plan to sent people down in about 6 months to help with the rebuilding. There is no need to go until they get power and place to stay.

Tsmith where are you located now.

My wife has a neice in New Iberia, she said all is ok there.

Take care and keep us updated.

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