New Orleans announces new evacuation plans
| 05.03.2006 | 05:53:58 | Views: 2604 | ID:
May 3 '06: In preparation for the 2006 hurricane season, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin has announced new plans for evacuation and emergency response in the event another large hurricane hits his city, the BBC reported Wednesday.
The focus of the new plan will center on evacuating people from New Orleans instead of using large public buildings as shelters during the storms. Rather, public arenas such as the Superdome and the Morial Convention Center "will be used only as transit points," the British news service continued. Additionally, the Associated Press reported that federal officials have said they are ready for the storm season - according to Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, "We're hiring as rapidly as we can, and we're prepared to bring all the resources."Chertoff said in a letter to Republican Congressman Tom Davis of Virginia that the Federal Emergency Management Agency will have its hiring quota filled up to 95 percent by the official start of the hurricane season, which begins on June 1. Davis, chairman of the House government oversight committee that led an inquiry of the federal response to Hurricane Katrina, found in the investigation that "local state and federal officials lacked urgency in preparing for catastrophes," the AP reported. The BBC reported that in addition to new evacuation plans, the city of New Orleans will allow people to take their pets out, so long as they are in cages. Modes of transportation to be used to help evacuate the city include buses, Amtrak trains, and opening up all lanes of highway traffic out of the city. "Meanwhile Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco has proposed a $7.4 billion rebuilding and buyout program to try to spur recovery in the state," the BBC reported.
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