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Info on Warnings, Reports, Planning (Research Project)

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posted on Sep, 17 2005 @ 01:38 PM

As far back as eight years ago, Congress ordered the Federal Emergency Management Agency to develop a plan for evacuating New Orleans during a massive hurricane, but the money instead went to studying the causeway bridge that spans the city's Lake Ponchartrain, officials say.

The outcome provides one more example of the government's failure to prepare for a massive but foreseeable catastrophe, said the lawmaker who helped secure the money for FEMA to develop the evacuation plan.

"They never used it for the intended purpose," said former Rep. Billy Tauzin, R-La. "The whole intent was to give them resources so they could plan an evacuation of New Orleans that anticipated that a very large number of people would never leave."

...concerns that led Congress in 1997 to set aside $500,000 for FEMA to create "a comprehensive analysis and plan of all evacuation alternatives for the New Orleans metropolitan area."

Frustrated two years later that nothing materialized, Congress strengthened its directive. This time it ordered "an evacuation plan for a Category 3 or greater storm, a levee break, flood or other natural disaster for the New Orleans area."

The $500,000 that Congress appropriated for the evacuation plan went to a commission that studied future options for the 24-mile bridge over Lake Ponchartrain, FEMA spokesman Butch Kinerney said.

The hefty report produced by the Greater New Orleans Expressway Commission "primarily was not about evacuation," said Robert Lambert, the general manager for the bridge expressway. "In general it was an overview of all the things we need to do" for the causeway through 2016.

Lambert said he could not trace how or if FEMA money came to the commission. Nor could Shelby LaSalle, a causeway consulting engineer who worked on the plan.

Asked why the congressional mandate was never fulfilled, Barry Scanlon, senior vice president in the consulting firm of former FEMA Director James Lee Witt, said he believes the agency did what it needed when it gave the money to the state.

"FEMA received an earmark which it processed through to the state as instructed by Congress," Scanlon said, Witt is now a private consultant to Gov. Kathleen Blanco, D-La., on the Katrina aftermath.

Tauzin said he, too, could never find out where the money went. "They gave it to the causeway commission? That's wacky," he said.

At the time eight years ago, the Louisiana delegation had plenty of political muscle to get the money. Then-Rep. Bob Livingston, R-La., was chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, which controls the government's purse strings.

Livingston, now a lobbyist, said he could not explain what happened either, although he knew of other predictive hurricane studies over the years.

"Do I wish the study had been made? Sure, but now that's by the boards. We're doing the best we can right now to repair and rebuild," he said.

FEMA typically contracts its studies to private or government entities. Kinerney, the agency spokesman, said it appeared the money went through the Louisiana government. State emergency and transportation officials said they did not recall it.

Asked about any earlier FEMA-funded plan, Mark Smith, spokesman for the state Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, said, "To the best of our knowledge we can find no information on this."

Congress' 1999 language directed that FEMA consult with that state agency as well as the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development.

That plan used phased evacuation orders and reverse-flow traffic patterns to avoid the highway snarls New Orleans saw during Hurricane Ivan in 2004.

But that plan was designed for traffic management, not to provide transportation or contingencies for the infirm, elderly and poor who could not get out on their own, officials said.

Bold added

It's amazing the sheer level of incompetency, mismanagement, lack of foresight and overall pathetic leadership exhibited over the years in addressing, planning, and/or preventing/limiting the death & destruction toll from these potential and now real cataclysmic event(s) to this well-known vulnerable area. Time for people to wake up and elect candidates who are genuinely proactive to such impending issues and possess some degree of prospicience. Sadly in the aftermath, many now realize their very lives & future literally depend on it.

posted on Sep, 17 2005 @ 07:39 PM
Seems like some of your intro comes from:

Here is another on the geopolitical importance of the Port of New Orleans - more opinion with facts.

I googled and found info on the Panama canal on Wikipedia. The rights to the land were obtained in 2/1904
The first ship went through on 10/14/1914. Essentially less than 10 years, for a project ?? X bigger than upgrading the port of New Orleans, with less access to begin with and nowhere near the equipment and construction capability we had a decade or more ago.

Another article/op-ed? I can't locate right now, made the point that a Port the size and importance of NO needs workers, who need homes, businesses, hospitals etc. To maintain the port means you must also see to the safety of the workers, eg the surrounding area.

The North Slope Oil companies fly people LONG distances to maintain the oil drilling operations. I'm not at all sure the residents would go for it, but if the historical/tourist section was rebuilt with the port upgrades, and other communities further away - possibly with a high speed rail system to downtown NO and the port, this could significantly reduce the harm of future disasters

posted on Oct, 27 2011 @ 12:10 AM
I saw this thread and seen the title which caught my attention:

I have been surfing the net the last past hour and I happen to find this pdf report from an obscure website.

It had a Tsunami Warning for the entire Pacific Coast on the date of 11/9/11. Here is the link

I have tried to download the PDF but it does not let me. Please read and spread this info.

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