AP/MSNBC report Katrina was only a Category 3 hurricane.
This raises very troubling speculation on how sound the levees around New Orleans really were. These levees were supposed to survive a Category 3 hurricane, that is what the Army Corps of Engineers has stated. We have already seen reports that the levees failed in areas before being topped by the water. Also in regards to 17th Streel where an 18 foot deep canal that allegedly had storm barriers with only 10 ft pilings it turns out the pilings when dug up were 26 feet deep and they still failed.
This is starting to stink worse and worse, fueling speculation that corners were cut and construction money went into pockets and not cement. I hope the engineers studying the failures find recommendations before the new levees are put in place. If there was mis-appropriation of funds, may the FBI find the evidence needed to convict the murdering thieves.
As to the why Katrina caused so much devastation, lets look at things. It took over 12 hours to move away from the coastline. It was a storm that engulfed the coastlines of the Florida panhandle, Alabama, Mississippi, and eastern part of Louisiana. And the population denisty of this area was far higher than it was when Camille came ashore in 1969. Add all that together and will get a huge disaster.
I hope to post tonight my impressions of my first drive on Hwy 90 since it has been partially re-opened. Stay tuned.