Weather News

New Orleans testing floodgates, levees in preparation for busy hurricane season forecast this year

todayJune 4, 2024 2

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BELLE CHASSE, La. – Major coastal cities like New Orleans are preparing for this hurricane season and future storms to come.The city of New Orleans is testing pumps and levees to ensure they are ready for the season, and city officials said the system is ready to take on any tropical system that comes out of the Gulf of Mexico. NOAA issued its most aggressive hurricane season forecast on record for the 2024 season, with potentially 17-25 named storms. Standing in front of the floodgate constructed after Hurricane Katrina, Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority- West Regional Director Nicolas Cali said it only takes one storm. Winds and flooding from Katrina caused nearly $187 billion in damage.”It doesn’t matter if it’s a busy season or a slow season,” Cali said. “If we get a hurricane that is bearing down on New Orleans, we have to be ready.”The floodgate is just one of many that can help keep New Orleans from going underwater. It protects hundreds of thousands of people and their homes.WHERE HISTORY SAYS HURRICANES WILL STRIKE THIS SEASON”Anyone that’s been to New Orleans knows that every drop of rainfall has to be mechanically removed, so all of that rainfall that goes into the neighborhoods is discharged into this basin,” Cali said.The facility tests the pumps every two weeks to prepare for the hurricane season.Another step the Flood Protection Authority takes is closing the gates to block storm surges from the Gulf of Mexico.”The purpose of this structure is twofold: It prevents the storm surge from intruding into the populated portions by gate, and it removes the water inside the basin, maintaining a safe water elevation so we can properly assess the levees,” Cali said.’AS RISKY AS I’VE EVER SEEN’: EXPERT SAYS THIS SUMMER’S WEATHER RISK COULD BE ‘SCARY’ FOR BUSINESSESAhead of this hurricane season, New Orleans created a new public safety warehouse to store disaster equipment. The warehouse will have room for generators, light towers, and command vehicles previously kept in separate locations. Collin Arnold, the city’s director of homeland security, said this will speed up response times.”We have a presence there where we can get the resources we need out to the public as soon as possible,” Arnold said.The new warehouse is expected to be fully operational in June. 

Written by: Badlands Classic Rock

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