Friday, September 02, 2005

A look into New Orleans...

Here's a link to a webcam on top of a satellite truck in New Orleans that is being used to cover the tragedy in New Orleans..... Click here.

The satellite truck operator of this truck, Bob, writes about his first night in New Orleans.... Warning... what you are about to read is disturbing:

Hey everyone,
We finally got settled down, and what a trip its been. Below us under the Causeway that leads to the collapsed bridge, there is a mob if 6000 people waiting for transportation out of here. 6000 people... some drunk and angry, some scared, but all tired and hungry. The first thing we noticed when approaching the city was an unbelievable foul stench, of everything mixed with flood water. It was enough to make my head hurt. When we finally arrived on site, on the outskirts of the mob, we noticed all the other TV trucks were packing up. The crowd was getting ugly. One man threatened an ABC ABSAT reporter he was going to get his gun and shoot all the TV people. Probably was an empty threat, brought on by having cameras pointed at him like some stranded animal, but we didn't want to be the last ones there to find out. Especially after the national guard troops left our area to go control the larger mob. There's been fights, rapes... you name it. One woman who appeared to be a tourist came up to me, looking absolutely scared out of her mind, asking to please take her away from this place. We didn't want to spend all night down there. A truck and crew from WABC in New York who was way up front had to be escorted out by troops after getting into some trouble. Every time the camera lights turned on, the crowd got upset. And I can't blame them. The army brought them here with the promise of food and shelter. I have seen neither. There are Blackhawk helicopters landing and taking off every few minutes, I don't know what the are doing. Some families with little kids are camped out on the edges of the larger crowd. In the middle is the rest of the group, looking desperate. And many of them are very upset. You have to feel bad for them. They are in a horrendous situation, and now they have to have TV cameras and lights all over the place. One lady came up to me and asked if she could go "use the bathroom" behind my truck, where she would be out of the view of the others. They have been out on this filthy street for days, and only tonight some got cots to sleep on. We were not on site for 5 minutes before people started asking for food, water, transportation out, cell phones, electricity to charge their phones... Luckily we did not get threatened, but we were only there for a few minutes. We had some trouble getting out due to the generator trailer behind this truck and having to back it up a narrow lane. What the flood lights illuminate is staggering, I can't imagine what daylight will bring.

I can understand that the people don't want the camera in their face, but it will be the journalist that continue to pressure the government to take handle of the situation. Unfortunately it hasn't happened yet. I'll admit to all of you... I'm getting a little upset... mad... to the point of screaming. Why was the government of Louisiana and New Orleans, or even the United States not more prepared? Scientist and the meteorology community has said for years that this would happen one day. In fact, it has been predicted to be worse than what you are seeing on the television for years. With that said, the levees were only designed for a CAT 3 storm!!! please...

On the evening after landfall I actually saw the governor of Louisiana on Larry King LIVE for an hour. Does she not have anything better to do??? I'm sorry if this offends you, but I actually cussed the television. The state that she is governing has just seen the worst natural disaster in history and she is on CNN for and hour!

I'm getting mad typing this, so I'm going to quit for now.

Feel free to email me...

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