Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Use of New Orleans Buses Could Have Prevented Disaster

The debate on whether New Orleans could have used their own bus resources in place and ready to go per their own plan to evacuate the Superdome is over, point-game-match. Per Bill Hobbs:

Bill Hobbs - Buses

Per Hobbs:

He counted 255 buses, the Times Picayune said that city had 254 working buses - the coincidence suggests the buses shown in the flooded parking lot in the AP aerial photo and the satellite photo are the city's working school buses.

254 buses, carrying 60 people per bus, could have evacuated 15,240 people per trip. How many trips to Baton Rouge - 75 miles away - might they have made if mobilized two days before Katrina hit? Two? That's 30,480 poor residents evacuated. Three? That's 45,720 people evacuated. The Superdome didn't need to be a shelter of "last resort" for tens of thousands of poor people to ride out Hurricane Katrina. It needed to be a central boarding station for a mass evacuation by bus before Katrina struck.

But the 254 working city school buses made zero trips.

Then in an Update even more buses were available when the city buses were included:

Preston has done most of the hard digging on the bus story and calculates that New Orleans had a total of 569 usable transit and school buses before Katrina hit. If they'd used 500 of them to transport people out before the storm hit, at a conservative 50 passengers per bus, they could have evacuated 25,000 people per trip.

That was the official plan. But the officials didn't implement the plan.

No the buses of New Orleans were not used and people died because of it. Lots went wrong on every level but I can't think of one single thing that went worse than not using the buses of New Orleans to move people out as their plan called for. If the people were moved out, all the horrible and bad things that happened, would not have happened.................................................................