By now, people all over the world has had time to think about and absorb the harmful impacts of hurricane Katrina. Hurricane Katrina was a storm that hit Louisiana in 2005. It was one of the worst storms to ever hit the United States of America.
How Hurricane Katrina Impacted the World
The impact stretched all the way from Florida to Louisiana. The city of New Orleans was the hardest hit. After hurricane Katrina left, New Orleans looked like a war zone. There were miles of flooding as far as the eyes could see.
The reason why New Orleans flooded so badly was due to bad engineering. The category 5 storm brought along with-it tons of water. When the levees could no longer hold back the water, it flooded out New Orleans. The storm brought in a loss of lives as well.
Hurricane Katrina is ranked as the 3rd hurricane of the season that was that powerful. The only other hurricane is this magnitude ever recorded was n 1935. It was called the 1935 Labor Day hurricane.
It had 185 mile per hour winds. Later came hurricane Michael that landed in the Florida pan handle in 2018. It was almost equal to the power of the 1935 Labor Day hurricane.
How Did Hurricane Katrina Begin?
The storm started to form over the Bahamas on August of 2005. The storm started as a tropical wave on August 23, 2005. The next day, it formed into a tropical depression. It quickly formed into a tropical storm shortly thereafter. Eventually, the storm moved in a westward direction and started to head towards Florida.
Later, it intensified into a hurricane and hit Florida on Hallandale beach and Aventura. As the storm moved further, it weakened a little bit and became a tropical storm once again.
As August 26th approached, the storm went into the Gulf of Mexico. Suddenly, the storm began to intensify. The storm became strong once again and was showing a category 5.
The waters were warm over the Gulf of Mexico. Warm weather is a perfect recipe for a massive hurricane to form. Before making landfall, it did become weaker and turned into a category three storm. This happened on August 29th.
The hurricane landed in Louisiana and Mississippi. The hurricane made the greatest initial impact in Gulfport Mississippi. The hurricane was massive and devastated Gulfport.
Hurricane Katrina took the lives of around 2,000 people. Besides the 1928 Okeechobee hurricane, Katrina was the most destructive storm to ever hit the United States.
How Much Money Was Lost During Hurricane Katrina?
Approximately 126 billion dollars was lost during hurricane Katrina. Cars, trucks and boats were thrown all over the place and often slamming into storefronts, casinos and hotels. The damage was immense.
If you think about it, it caused 5 times as much damage as hurricane Andrew did in 1992. As you can imagine, this was mass destruction on a multitude of levels. I don’t think anyone could have expected the devastation that hurricane Katrina was going to cause to America.
Louisiana was not prepared for this mass hurricane. It left residents without power, food, water and housing for several weeks. The devastation was so severe that it took a national and international interest.
Donations started to come into the city from around the world. Many cities in the United States were taking people that were displaced and giving them housing to help in the crisis.
Who Built the Levees?
The United States Corps of Engineers built the faulty levees. They were responsible for the levees design that happened decades before the storm hit. Unfortunately, the Flood Control Act of 1928 made it impossible to hold them financially responsible. The sovereign immunity act made it impossible for the city to sue itself or the corps.
Because the city did not handle the storm well, many government politicians and workers resigned. They failed to evacuate or prepare the city well enough to avoid this kind of catastrophe and lost lives.
It’s hard to believe that a storm like this could ever make landfall and to our knowledge. Government officials underestimated the devastation of hurricane Katrina and what it was about to do.
How Did the Military Prepare for Hurricane Katrina?
The coast guard activated more than 400 reservists to assist in the aftereffects of the powerful storm. There were 24-hour search and rescue missions for people that were unaccounted for. They would go from house to house looking for anyone that needed assistance.
On August 27th, President George W. Bush did declare a state of emergency for Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi. He told Governor Blanco to declare a state of emergency. However, not all the areas were evacuated.
Jeb Bush (brother of President George W. Bush) did declare a state of emergency for Florida an August 24th. Before this massive storm came ashore, schools were closed for days and preparation was done as well for people having enough food, water and other supplies.
Florida was better prepared for a hurricane impact than Louisiana was. This had a lot to do with the leadership.
Celebrities that Helped with Money, Food, Medical Supplies and more for Hurricane Katrina:
- Julia Roberts
- Jamie Foxx
- John Travolta
- Sean Penn
- Ellen DeGeneres
- George Clooney
- Steven Spielberg
- Jay Z
- Brad Pitt
- Angelina Jolie
These celebrities assisted in ways that most people did not. They gave money to people that were in the greatest need at the time. This is something that was helpful for those impacted by Hurricane Katrina. Many men and women lost their homes and entire lives there.
Homes that were owned by families for 30 or more years were now devastated and lost forever. Many people had to uproot their life and start over again in other states. Many people’s life savings were completely wiped out. The devastation of hurricane Katrina was enormous, and most people today wonder if we are truly ready in other states for another storm of this size.
In recent years, hurricanes seem to be forming more often near Florida. Many weather experts are predicting a major storm to hit Florida over the next decade. They are often predicting a category 4 or 5 storm to hit Florida in a way that has never happened before.
Hurricane Irma in 2017 was a close call for Florida. If hurricane Irma would have hit Florida in 2017, it would have had around the same impact as hurricane Katrina. Thank goodness Florida avoided the major impact of hurricane Irma throughout the state.
Celebrity That Criticized the President of the United States
Rapper Kanye West went on national television to criticize the President of the United States for failing to provide enough aid for people that were suffering during hurricane Katrina’s aftermath.
He is most famous for accusing George W. Bush of not liking black people. Kanye West was primarily concerned with African Americans being portrayed negatively in the media by what was being shown on television.
However, was George W. Bush really to blame for people being stranded for weeks without power, housing, food, water and electric? As history shows now, the politicians that governed the state of Louisiana were the ones that failed the people of New Orleans because they simply didn’t prepare enough.
The Army Corps of Engineers built Levees that failed. The main blame falls on the Army Corps of Engineers. President George W. Bush did send in a lot of aid to help the people of Louisiana and many experts say that he did a great job from the federal governments aid to the people of Louisiana.
Helping Louisiana was a joint effort by thousands of people. Without the help of the government agencies, the rescue efforts would have been a lot worse.
People alive today are more aware of the impact of a category 5 storm and how it can devastate and entire community. We can only learn about the mass devastation of these storms as we grow in technology.
Spaghetti models today often show where the storm will go and how large it will be. NASA does a phenomenal job at predicting the size if a storm and its impact on US soil.
It’s best to learn as much as you can about hurricanes because there will most likely be another category 5 storm hitting somewhere along the coasts of Florida, Louisiana or Texas. This is what the experts are telling us anyways.