On Sunday (02-26-2006) we drove out thru the Lower 9th Ward and St. Bernard Parish. Both these areas have been reported on extensively in the national news. After having been there myself, I can tell you the pictures just don’t do it, you have to see it for yourself. Get on a plane. After six months, the place still looks like a war zone. Never in my life was I seen an area so utterly devastated.
Here are photos from the Lower 9th. We drove around randomly. There is nothing. Every 5-10 blocks you will see a family picking thru the remains of their home. Piles of garbage are still everywhere are destroyed cars and boats are all over the place. Everywhere you drive in New Orleans you are see the high water mark of Katrina–a grizzly reminder of the devastation.
Everywhere is New Orleans you will see these markings on building. The date on top is when the federal, state or local agency first searched the house. Katrina hit on August 29th. This house was not searched until September 16th. The number on the bottom is how many people they found in the house–in this case zero. House markings also show when they found animals–dogs and cats. People were not allowed to take their pets when evacuating the city.
Here is one of the house markings showing they found a cat inside. Of the over 1,000 officially reported dead, many of these of people that stayed with their pets after they were told pets could not be evacuated. Thousands of other people are still "missing" — either bodies waiting to be found in the rubble or unaccounted for in the greatest diaspora is US history.
The white trailers you see are FEMA trailers. Residents can apply for FEMA trailers–they live in the trailers while repairing their homes. We saw no FEMA trailers in the Lower 9th Ward, but there were a good number in St. Bernard Parish.St. Bernard: