This is Part 2 of my two part blog post about this event in history. Click here to read Part 1.
It is hard to believe that it is the 8th anniversary of the devastating natural disaster, Hurricane Katrina. She began on August 23, 2005 as the 12th tropical depression of the season forming over the Bahamas and in ten days she became
- the costliest natural disaster in the history of the United States. (estimated $81 billion)
- one of the five deadliest in United States History.
- the sixth strongest overall of recorded Atlantic hurricanes.
- deadliest U.S. hurricane since the 1928 Okeechobee hurricane.
HURRICANE KATRINA’S TEN DAY TIMELINE
In this part 2 of 2, I continue the timeline with August 29, 2005
Monday, August 29, 2005
2 a.m.: Hurricane Katrina turns north toward the Louisiana coast, but the storm’s strongest winds have diminished slightly to about 155 miles an hour (250 kilometers an hour). The center of the storm is about 130 miles (210 kilometers) from New Orleans. A weather buoy about 50 miles (80 kilometers) east of the river’s mouth reports waves at least 40 feet (12 meters) high.
5 a.m.: The hurricane’s strongest winds are now about 150 miles an hour (240 kilometers an hour), and its eye is about 90 miles (145 kilometers) from New Orleans and about 120 miles (195 kilometers) from Biloxi.
7 a.m.: Hurricane Katrina’s eye is about to come ashore in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana. The hurricane’s strongest winds are about 145 miles an hour (235 kilometers an hour). The eye is about 70 miles (115 kilometers) from New Orleans.
8 a.m.: Mayor Ray Nagin reports that water is flowing over one of New Orleans’s levees.
9 a.m.: The eye is about 40 miles (65 kilometers) from New Orleans and is expected to pass just to the east of the city. The storm’s strongest winds are about 135 miles an hour (215 kilometers an hour).
11 a.m.: The hurricane’s eye comes ashore again near the Louisiana-Mississippi border. The storm’s strongest winds are about 125 miles an hour (200 kilometers an hour). Katrina’s front-right quadrant—which contains its strongest winds and peak storm surge—slams into Biloxi and Gulfport, Mississippi, with devastating force, destroying much of both cities.
Meanwhile, a major levee in New Orleans has failed. Water is pouring through the 17th Street Canal, and the city is beginning to flood.
1 p.m.: Hurricane Katrina continues to weaken as it moves farther inland. Its strongest winds are about 105 miles an hour (170 kilometers an hour).
3 p.m.: The center of the hurricane is about 20 miles (30 kilometers) west of Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Its winds are down to about 95 miles an hour (155 kilometers an hour).
At the following link, you can use an interactive animated reenactment of events of August 29, 2005.
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
11 a.m.: The National Hurricane Center issues its last advisory on the storm that once was Hurricane Katrina. The storm has maximum winds of about 35 miles an hour (55 kilometers an hour), and its center is dumping heavy rainfall on Tennessee.
During the day: Floodwaters continue to pour into New Orleans from breaks in the city’s levees
Wednesday, August 31, 2005
During the day: Health and Human Services Secretary Michael O. Leavitt declares a public health emergency in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. Meanwhile, Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco orders that all remaining residents leave New Orleans. But buses and trucks aren’t available to carry out the order.
Thursday, September 1, 2005
2 p.m.: On national television New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin issues a “desperate SOS” for help from the federal government.
Nagin says there’s no food for those who took shelter at the Louisiana Superdome and New Orleans convention center.
Friday, September 2, 2005
During the day: A convoy of U.S. National Guard troops and supply trucks arrives in New Orleans and distributes food and water to residents stranded at the Superdome and convention center. Congress approves 10.5 billion dollars (U.S.) in aid for Hurricane Katrina rescue and relief, and President George W. Bush signs the bill.
The work of repairing the city’s levees, pumping out the flood waters, and finding homes for tens of thousands of displaced residents is underway.
People, Pets and Property Damage
In an Associated Press article published in the Huffington Post a year ago on August 27, 2012, the reporter made the following comparisons of New Orleans before and after Katrina:
What’s the city’s population?
- Before: about 484,000 people.
- After: about 360,400 people.
How has the racial makeup changed?
- Before: 67 percent of the population was African-American
- After: about 60 percent African-American.
- Before: whites made up 28 percent.
- After: about 33 percent of the population.
What shape are the city’s flood defenses in?
- Before: the Army Corps of Engineers was working on upgrading the city’s flood defenses to protect against a Category 3 level storms, but ran into construction problems. The city’s levee system was incomplete when Katrina came ashore.
- After: the Corps was given about $14 billion to improve flood defenses. The majority of the post-Katrina work has been completed and the corps said the city was ready to handle a storm a Category 3 hurricane, with winds of at least 111 mph. Isaac is expected to come ashore as a Category 2, with winds of 96 to 110 mph.
Have the city’s demographics changed?
- While demographers say an influx of college-educated newcomers have come to New Orleans since Katrina, the number of poor people remains high. About the same percentage of households live in poverty as they did before Katrina – 27 percent.
Is the city safer?
- New Orleans’ crime rate is stubbornly high and remains nearly twice the national rate, the same as it ranked in 2000.
Are people still living in FEMA trailers?
- No one lives in a FEMA trailer. A year after Katrina, more than 70,000 Louisiana families lived in trailers.