View Full Version : Hurricane Katrina Timeline

09-10-2005, 01:55 PM
CNN has an excellent timeline, with links to many different CNN articles. I've snipped some highlights and gathered them here. Feel free to add to this!!


AUGUST 26, 2005
Snippets from CNN – Weather 8/26 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/26/tropical.weather/):

4 p.m. - The National Hurricane Center warns that Katrina is expected to reach dangerous Category 4 intensity before making landfall in Mississippi or Louisiana. Hours later, in anticipation of a possible landfall, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour and Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco declare states of emergency.

Katrina first rolled ashore between Florida's Hallandale Beach and North Miami Beach, bringing punishing winds and torrential rains.

AUGUST 27, 2005
Snippets from CNN – Weather 8/27 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/27/tropical.weather/):

5 a.m. - Katrina is upgraded to a Category 3, or major hurricane, with the Gulf Coast in its path.

During the day, residents of Louisiana's low-lying areas are told they must evacuate; residents in other low-lying areas are urgently advised to do so. President Bush declares a state of emergency in Louisiana.

Katrina, already has been blamed for seven deaths in Florida, where it made landfall Thursday as a Category 1 hurricane. As much as 18 inches of rain fell in some areas, flooding streets and homes.

“Ladies and gentlemen, this is not a test. This is the real deal," New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin said at a news conference. He urged people to remain calm, "board up your homes, make sure you have medicine, make sure your car has enough gas in it," and prepare to leave.

“There's about 36 hours for folks to get ready," said Federal Emergency Management Agency director Michael Brown. "Beyond that, it's just too late." "I can't emphasize enough to viewers how serious FEMA is taking this storm," he told CNN.

At 10 p.m., the hurricane center said Katrina was 335 miles southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River. A tropical storm warning and a hurricane watch stretched from the Florida-Alabama border east to Destin, Florida, and from west of Morgan City to Intracoastal City, Louisiana.

09-10-2005, 01:57 PM
AUGUST 28, 2005
Snippets from CNN - Weather 8/28 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/28/katrina.neworleans/index.html):

10 a.m. - As Katrina hits 175 mph winds, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin orders mandatory evacuations.

Nagin warned that Katrina's expected storm surge -- which could top 28 feet -- would likely topple those levies.

Nagin said the city's shelters should be used as a last resort and said that people who use them should bring enough food, water and supplies to last for several days. He said that the Superdome, the city's main shelter, "is not going to be a very comfortable place at some point in time."

Federal Emergency Management Agency teams and other emergency teams were already in place to move in as soon as the storm was over, FEMA Under Secretary Michael Brown said.

AUGUST 29, 2005
Snippets from CNN – Weather 8/29 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/29/superdome/index.html):

4 a.m. - Hurricane Katrina is downgraded to a strong Category 4 storm.

7 a.m. - Katrina makes landfall on the Louisiana coast between Grand Isle and the mouth of the Mississippi River.

11a.m. - Katrina makes another landfall near the Louisiana-Mississippi state line with 125 mph winds. The storm's daylong rampage claims lives and ravages property in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, where coastal areas remained under several feet of water.

Two major flood-control levees are breached, and the National Weather Service reports "total structural failure" in parts of New Orleans. A section of the roof of the Louisiana Superdome, where 10,000 people are taking refuge, opens. Many are feared dead in flooded neighborhoods still under as much as 20 feet of water.

In Mississippi, dozens are dead and Gov. Haley Barbour describes "catastrophic damage" along the coast. More than 1.3 million homes and businesses in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama were without electricity, according to utility companies.

10 p.m.: More than 12 hours after making landfall, one of the most powerful hurricanes to hit the northern Gulf Coast in half a century is downgraded to a tropical storm. Remnants head north toward Tennessee and the Ohio River Valley, spurring harsh storms and tornadoes.

09-10-2005, 02:01 PM
AUGUST 30, 2005
Snippets from CNN – Weather 8/30 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/30/katrina/index.html):

New Orleans is left with no power, no drinking water, dwindling food supplies, widespread looting, fires -- and steadily rising waters from major levee breaches.

Deteriorating conditions in New Orleans will force authorities to evacuate the thousands of people at city shelters, including the Louisiana Superdome, where a policeman told CNN unrest was escalating.

The storm ripped ashore in Louisiana on Monday morning with winds topping 140 mph before scourging Mississippi and Alabama.

New Orleans was left with no power, no drinking water, dwindling food supplies, widespread looting, smoke rising on the horizon and the sounds of gunfire.

Nagin estimated the number of people in the Superdome at between 12,000 and 15,000 people as of late Tuesday.

National Guard troops moved into the downtown business district, and state police squads backed by SWAT teams were sent in to scatter looters and restore order, authorities said late Tuesday.

In Mississippi:
Snippets from CNN – Weather 8/30 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/30/katrina/index.html):

Katrina destroyed "every one" of the casinos that raked in $500,000 per day in revenues to state coffers, Barbour said after a helicopter tour of the affected areas. "There were 10- and 20-block areas where there was nothing -- not one home standing," he said.

Streets and homes were flooded as far as 6 miles inland from the beach, and looting was reported in Biloxi and in Gulfport, officials said.

The impact of Katrina on U.S. oil production and refinery capabilities may be worse than initial reports estimated and could lead to a national gas crisis in the short-term, analysts warned Tuesday.

President Bush was returning to Washington two days ahead of schedule to help oversee Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts, the White House announced.
Source: CNN – Politics 8/30 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/08/30/bush.hurricane.ap/index.html)

The U.S. military Tuesday started to move ships and helicopters to the region at the request of the Federal Emergency Management Agency to aid in rescue and medical needs, military officials said.
Source: CNN – Weather 8/30 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/30/katrina.recovery/index.html)

09-10-2005, 02:04 PM
AUGUST 31, 2005

President Bush flies over the Gulf Coast in Air Force One to survey the damage. He later announces a major federal mobilization to help the victims.
Source: CNN – Politics 8/31 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/08/31/bush.katrina/index.html)

The entire region is declared a public health emergency amid fears of diseases that could spread because of the contaminated, stagnant water.
Source: CNN – Health 8/31 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/HEALTH/08/31/katrina.public.health/index.html)

Snippets from CNN – Weather 8/31 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/08/31/katrina.impact/index.html):

Alabama reported two deaths, and in Louisiana the mayor of New Orleans said the storm probably killed hundreds if not thousands of people in his city alone. In Florida, Katrina left 11 people dead.

Electricity was out for more than 2.3 million people in Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama and Florida.

Pentagon officials said Wednesday the governors of Louisiana and Mississippi have ordered the mobilization of an additional 10,000 National Guard troops to provide security and help with hurricane relief.

Federal officials asked for patience as residents of the affected areas expressing frustration with the government's response. "I need the American people to recognize how catastrophic this is, to be patient and to work with us," said Michael Brown, the Federal Emergency Management Agency chief who is leading the federal response on the ground.

"This recovery will take years," Bush said in an address from the White House Rose Garden, hours after viewing parts of the Gulf Coast from aboard Air Force One.

In Louisiana:

Evacuations from the Louisiana Superdome to the Houston Astrodome begin. About 20,000 people are expected to be transferred from New Orleans to Houston.

"We are gravely concerned about the potential for cholera, typhoid and dehydrating diseases," Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt said.

"We know there is a significant number of dead bodies in the water," and others dead in attics, The Associated Press quoted Nagin as saying. When asked how many, he reportedly said: "Minimum, hundreds. Most likely, thousands."

Rescue workers continued to push bodies aside Wednesday as they used boats and helicopters to search for survivors. Their efforts have been hampered by lawlessness and damaged infrastructure.

Wednesday evening, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers planned to use helicopters to begin dropping 15,000-pound sandbags into breaches in the city's levee system -- the first step in trying to control the flooding that submerged most of the city.

Doctors said two patients died Wednesday at Charity Hospital as a result of the lack of electricity and water.

Meanwhile, firefighters labored to fight a blaze in a store at the edge of the city's famed French Quarter. Firefighters had to pump floodwater from the street because hydrants didn't work.

"The communication systems throughout the entire Gulf Coast are severely compromised," said Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu.

Across Lake Pontchartrain, in Slidell, Louisiana, Mayor Ben Morris was among thousands of homeless residents who have been unable to communicate with anyone outside Slidell. Morris estimated 90 percent of the city's residences were destroyed or damaged and that half of its 30,000 residents will be left homeless.

In Mississippi:

In the small town of Pass Christian in Harrison County, most of the homes were destroyed, and the bridge linking the town to Bay St. Louis is gone. To the east, the tiny city of Long Beach was mostly razed by Katrina's storm surge and high winds.

In Gulfport, backhoes and dump trucks ventured onto the streets Wednesday to begin clearing roads of debris. In the hardest-hit areas in Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties, emergency officials are setting up hospitals in tents and portable structures.

Katrina left Biloxi's Keesler Air Force Base -- home to the U.S. Air Force fleet of hurricane-hunter aircraft -- 95 percent "smashed," an Air Force official at the base said Wednesday.

09-10-2005, 02:06 PM
Snippets from CNN – Weather 9/1 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/09/01/katrina.recovery/index.html):

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff announces that 4,200 National Guard troops trained as military police will be deployed to New Orleans over the next three days. Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco requests the mobilization of 40,000 National Guard troops.

The breach at New Orleans' 17th Street Canal is under repair, and engineers expect to close the front of the canal at Lake Pontchartrain by Thursday evening, said Walter Baumy of the Army Corps of Engineers there.

FEMA says it has sent 1,400 medical personnel and 1,800 urban search and rescue personnel to the devastated areas of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. The teams include specialists in searching collapsed buildings, giving medical attention to injured people and animals, and providing mortuary services.

FEMA Director Brown said that although some teams had to withdraw "temporarily" because of gunfire, rescue efforts are continuing. He said that food and water is being delivered to the Superdome and convention center in New Orleans and also in Mississippi and Alabama.

Snippets from CNN – Weather 9/1 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/WEATHER/09/01/katrina.impact/index.html/):

Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Michael Brown said his agency was attempting to work "under conditions of urban warfare."

Brown said those who ignored the city's mandatory evacuation order bore some responsibility.
"I think the death toll may go into the thousands and, unfortunately, that's going to be attributable a lot to people who did not heed the advance warnings," he told CNN.

"The convention center is unsanitary and unsafe, and we are running out of supplies," said Nagin, adding that officials did not expect to have enough buses for evacuations.

Brown told CNN Thursday evening that federal officials only found out about the convention center crisis earlier in the day, and that he had since directed that "all available resources" be made available there.

Charity Hospital, one of several facilities attempting to evacuate patients, was forced to halt the effort after coming under sniper fire.

In Washington, the Senate convened in special session Thursday night and approved a $10.5 billion disaster relief request from the Bush administration. The House is expected to do the same when it takes up the matter Friday.

Snippets from CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/02/katrina.impact/index.html):

President Bush visited Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana, saying there was still a lot of work ahead for the federal government. And after returning to Washington, Bush signed a $10.5 billion disaster relief bill. The amount includes $10 billion in supplemental funds for the Federal Emergency Management Agency and $500,000 for the Pentagon for its hurricane relief work.

Texas officials say nearly 154,000 evacuees have arrived there.

Gen. Robert Crear, with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, estimated Friday that some flooded neighborhoods will be pumped dry in 36 days but that it will be at least 80 days before the last section of the city is dry.

Snippets from CNN – Health 9/2 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/HEALTH/09/02/katrina.hospitals/index.html):

Efforts to evacuate some of the 200 patients at New Orleans' Charity Hospital resumed Friday, a day after they were halted because of sniper fire.

Gupta described the process of evacuating patients from hospitals who needed ventilating: They were taken by boat to a parking deck, then carried up eight flights of stairs to a helicopter landing area. Two patients died while waiting, Gupta said. The hospital's basement, where the morgue is located, is flooded, forcing staff to stash bodies in the stairwells, Gupta said.

09-10-2005, 02:08 PM
Snippets from CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/03/katrina.convention/index.html):

A string of buses arrived Saturday morning at the New Orleans convention center to take away some of the 30,000 people who have relied on its shelter since Sunday.

With no food, water or any kind of sanitation, the convention center's stranded have spent six days living in squalor, many of them trying to defy the putrid combination of intense 90-degree heat, death and feces.

National Guard Lt. Col. Jerry Crooks told The Associated Press that troops had served more than 70,000 meals outside the convention center and had another 130,000 on hand.

Snippets from CNN – Politics 9/3 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/03/bush.radio.katrina.ap/index.html/):

Bush said 4,000 active duty troops are already in the area and 7,000 more will arrive in the next 72 hours from the Army's 82nd Airborne from Fort Bragg, North Carolina, 1st Cavalry Division from Fort Hood, Texas, and the Marines' 1st and 2nd Expeditionary forces from Camp Pendleton, California, and Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Those troops will join some 21,000 National Guard troops already in the region.

"If we can't respond faster than this to an event we saw coming across the Gulf for days, then why do we think we're prepared to respond to a nuclear or biological attack?" asked former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a Republican.

Snippets from CNN – U.S. News - Coastguard Rescue (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/04/coastguard.rescue/index.html):

"My guys are coming back and telling me, 'Sir, I went into a house, and there are three elderly people in their beds, and they're gasping, and they're dying,' " Coast Guard Capt. Bruce Jones said.

"And we got calls today, 'We need you ... to go to a place in St. Bernard Parish. It's a hospice, ... and there are 10 dead and there are 10 dying.' But those people were probably alive yesterday or the day before."

Though pilots, rescue crew members and maintenance workers are red-eyed and exhausted, they're refusing to rest, CNN's Karl Penhaul reported.

As of Sunday morning, the Coast Guard reported it rescued more than 17,000 people via helicopter, boat, cutter and ferry -- almost twice the number of lives it has saved in the past 50 years.

There may be no better way to explain the desperation on the city's ravaged streets than this: In the past few days, two police officers took their own lives and dozens have turned in their badges.
Source: CNN – U.S. News - Police (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/04/katrina.police.ap/index.html)

09-10-2005, 02:11 PM

One week after Hurricane Katrina devastated the region, miles-long lines of vehicles crawled into Jefferson Parish on Monday as residents were allowed to return to salvage what was left of their homes.
Source: CNN – U.S. News - New Orleans (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/05/katrina.neworleans.ap/index.html)

Repair crews have patched the ruptured levee along the 17th Street Canal and have begun pumping water from New Orleans, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Monday. The process will take months, depending on the size of the area of the city involved, the corps said.

Helicopters closed the approximately 300-foot breach by filling it with more than 200 15,000-pound sandbags. Trucks also poured loads of fill dirt into the damaged section.
Source: CNN – U.S. News - New Orleans Levees (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/05/neworleans.levees/index.html)

Recovery teams searched house to house Monday in New Orleans for hurricane victims, and helicopters circled the city for survivors.

The Coast Guard said Monday its air and water crews have rescued more than 22,000 people in states affected by Katrina.
Source: CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/05/katrina.impact/index.html)

Snippets from CNN – Health (http://www.cnn.com/2005/HEALTH/09/06/katrina.water/index.html):

Public health officials report "minor outbreaks" of diarrheal diseases in children evacuated from the flood zone. The Centers for Disease Control says five people have died from infection with Vibrio vulnificus, a form of the bacteria that causes cholera. An official in the New Orleans mayor's office says the standing floodwater is contaminated with E. coli bacteria.

Despite reporting five deaths from a bacteria-caused illness, public health officials said Tuesday they are more concerned about the possibility of toxic chemicals in the water covering New Orleans than they are about a cholera outbreak.

The CDC said that five people who survived Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans died after becoming infected with Vibrio vulnificus, caused by a form of the bacteria that also causes cholera. One of the deaths occurred in Texas; the other four were in Mississippi, CDC spokesman Tom Skinner said. "These were all either elderly or had chronic, underlying health conditions," people considered most at risk for suffering complications from such infections, he said.

Snippets from CNN – Politics 9/6 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/06/katrina.washington.ap/index.html):

Republicans and Democrats alike heaped criticism on the Federal Emergency Management Administration, the government's front-line responder agency for national disasters.
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi told Bush to his face at the White House that he should fire the agency's director, Michael Brown. "The president thanked me for my suggestion," the California Democrat said afterward.

"Bureaucracy is not going to stand in the way of getting the job done for the people," Bush told reporters.

House and Senate committee chairmen announced investigations, while House Speaker Dennis Hastert suggested a bipartisan House-Senate probe.

Some Democrats called for an independent commission along the lines of the one appointed after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. "There was nobody in charge at the federal government, there was nobody willing to take responsibility to work with the state and local officials," Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York said at a news conference.

09-10-2005, 02:13 PM
Snippets from CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/07/katrina.impact/index.html):

St. Bernard Parish Sheriff Jack Stevens said said "30-plus" bodies were found in St. Rita's Nursing Home in lower St. Bernard Parish -- one of the areas hardest hit by Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Between 40 and 50 other people were rescued from the facility, Stevens said.

The parish is east of New Orleans, where Mayor Ray Nagin has authorized police to forcibly remove anyone not involved in rescue efforts. Police Superintendent Eddie Compass said, however, that his officers would not forcibly remove residents until all those who want to leave voluntarily are out.

Snippets from CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/07/news.update/):

Speaking on the eve of the 4-year anniversary of the terrorist attacks, former congressman Tim Roemer said, "We have had our first post-9/11 test and we have miserably failed. We're not prepared for a disaster. We're not prepared for a large-scale terrorist attack.
"Our government couldn't drop water to our most needy citizens. We couldn't get generators to people in hospitals. We didn't go by an evacuation plan."

A nurse at a New Orleans-area nursing home where more than 30 residents died when water from Hurricane Katrina surged into the facility said Friday she doesn't understand why no rescuers went to the home to evacuate it. "I cannot understand if there was a mandatory evacuation scheduled for Sunday afternoon why they didn't get these people out," Tammy Daigle told CNN. Daigle said she was told by other staff at St. Rita's Nursing Home that administrators had no plans to evacuate the facility's 60 residents, even though concerned relatives were calling the home.

Still, after last week's rampant looting, some holdouts fear authorities "cannot protect their property," City Council President Oliver Thomas told CNN. Others were concerned about conditions in shelters or worried about their pets. A blind and elderly woman who identified herself as Ms. Connie rejected authorities' efforts to coax her from her rundown rental home until they agreed to take her dog. "My dog goes where I go," she said.

Snippets from CNN – Politics 9/7 (http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/07/katrina.congress/index.html):

A bipartisan joint congressional committee will review the response at all levels of government to Hurricane Katrina, the leaders of the House and Senate said Wednesday.

Frist told reporters during a brief appearance that the new committee will be composed of senior members of Congress, with Republicans in the majority.

The Bush administration on Wednesday asked Congress to approve a $51.8 billion emergency supplemental bill to pay for the recovery from Katrina -- with the White House budget chief saying "substantially more" money will likely be needed in the weeks and months ahead.

"The emergency response system was set up to work from the bottom up," DeLay said late Tuesday. DeLay added that Alabama and Mississippi did a much better job of responding quickly than Louisiana. Alabama and Mississippi have Republican governors. Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco is a Democrat.

09-10-2005, 02:15 PM
Snippets from CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/08/katrina.redcross/index.html):

Louisiana officials rebuffed American Red Cross requests to enter New Orleans with relief supplies last week because of concerns over logistical difficulties, Red Cross and state officials said Thursday.

The national president of the American Red Cross, Marsha Evans, first made the request to undertake the operation during a visit to the state on September 1, three days after Hurricane Katrina struck, a local Red Cross chapter official said.

"We had adequate supplies, the people and the vehicles," Howell said at a news conference in Baton Rouge. "It was the middle of a military rescue operation trying to save lives. We were asked not to go in, and we abided by that recommendation."

"To set up a feeding station to feed a large number of people, you need space. You need to escort the personnel into position. ... And we asked Mr. Howell, and he concurred, to wait 24 hours to go to set that in," Mayeaux said. By Saturday, however, the point became moot because the large-scale evacuation of the city was under way, Howell and Mayeaux said.
"After that point in time ... their rescue operation was in full force, and they felt they had adequate supplies there to take care of it without (the Red Cross) being introduced into the situation," Howell said. "So we did not go directly into New Orleans."

The National Guard began moving large quantities of food, water and ice into New Orleans and other damaged areas of southeast Louisiana on Wednesday, two days after the hurricane struck and a day before the Red Cross made its request to go in, Mayeaux said. The supplies were being delivered from Camp Beauregard, a National Guard base near Alexandria, 150 miles away, in the central part of the state. So far, 16.4 million pounds of ice, 14.2 million quarts of water and 7.9 million ready-to-eat meals have been distributed, Mayeaux said.

Snippets from CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/08/katrina.impact/index.html):

Congress late Thursday approved $51.8 billion in emergency spending to pay for Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts -- an amount that sets aside roughly $1.4 billion a day for five weeks. The Senate vote was 97-0. The House passed the bill 410-11.

The Army Corps of Engineers said Thursday that 37 of the 174 permanent pumps around New Orleans are operational, pumping about 11,000 cubic feet of water per second. In addition, 17 portable pumps are working, and another 153 are to be installed, he said.

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin has ordered a mandatory evacuation of New Orleans, warning that it's not safe to stay in the city. Police Superintendent Eddie Compass said police would not start the forced evacuations until everyone who wants to leave is out.

"We're going to be respectful, talk to people, get counselors in to talk to people," he said. "A lot of people have been traumatized. We're going to do this with sensitivity. They have to understand, this water is polluted, it's dangerous, they could die."


Amid mounting criticism, FEMA director Michael Brown will be replaced as the on-site head of relief operations in the Gulf Coast region devastated by Hurricane Katrina, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff announced Friday. He will be replaced by Vice Adm. Thad Allen, the chief of staff of the U.S. Coast Guard, who has been acting as Brown's assistant in the Gulf region.
Source: CNN – U.S. News (http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/09/07/news.update/)