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. Louisiana Levees Not Ready For Another Katrina

File photo: A helicopter drops sandbags to fill a broken levee damaged by Hurrican Katrina. Photo courtesy of AFP.
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Aug 22, 2006
Repairs on the levees in New Orleans, Louisiana, which burst last year under the fury of Hurricane Katrina should do some good but are not enough to handle another storm that size, a US military official said Tuesday.

"There's still a huge amount of risk in that part of the country for a levee system," Don Basham, chief engineer for construction in the US Army Corps of Engineers, said at a a news conference.

Basham discounted the possibility of the levees failing but said: "If we have another Katrina event today ... you definitely are going to have water going on top of the levees."

Hurricane Katrina slammed ashore August 29, 2005, devastating New Orleans and other Gulf Coast communities and killing more than 1,300 people. The US Army Corps of Engineers spent months repairing the levees that, when they overflowed or broke, flooded most of New Orleans.

"Our commitment was to restore the integrity of the levees system back to pre-Katrina conditions. We have done that," Basham said, allowing that "in some cases, we had to do that not with a permanent fix but with a temporary fix."

Source: Agence France-Presse

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