Saturday, August 27, 2005

Hurricane Katrina II

Just got back from buzzing through the city, helping to prepare some homes. Hit Uptown, Garden District, The Lakefront and River Ridge. Traffic in the city is light - but slightly manic. I never ventured onto the interstate system where Contraflow (evacuation traffic flowing in all lanes directed either East or West starting at a midpoint in the city) is in effect. Talk on WWL radio is of major traffic back-ups on Airline Hwy. headed west and complaints about major back-ups through smaller towns off the interstate system where people are being forced to stop for traffic lights. All else regarding Contraflow appears to be working.

I stopped at Orleans Marina around 6:00pm. I'd say that half of the boats were tied up properly. (pictures to follow later) The Levee Board will apparantly begin closing the flood gates at 6:00am. Reports are to expect 12-18 foot waves on Lake Pontchartrain. (the lake is only 12 feet deep)

Winds in the city are already gusting about 20 knots, no outer bands or rain at all as of now, and have heard that if Katrina does not turn fully north by morning, New Orleans will sustain a direct hit. Welcome to the worst case scenario for a hurricane strike in America folks.

Tonight though, it's kind of peaceful - I'm now enjoying the soon to be luxury of AC and a cold beer. Earlier around 8:00pm, on my way towards Earhart Blvd. from Uptown, I passed a church on Fountainbleau where there was a wedding taking place. Some things must still go on, though Sheriff Harry Lee has canceled his birthday party which was to take place on Sunday night. He actually announced this after the Gov. Blanco and Parish President Broussard spoke this morning - trying to keep everyone's spirits up.

I have worked out all the bugs technologically. I should be able to post throughout. Hourly updates to begin tomorrow around noon. Expect intermittent posts until then. The camera is ready to go and will publish those as long as I can manage that.

Talk to y'all soon.


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