PEEK

Hurricane Gustav Comes in Slow and to the Left

Let us all share a very, very tempered huzzah!
As I hoped, Hurricane Gustav changed course slightly, moving to the West and away from New Orleans, and the storm downgraded to a Category 2 storm upon landfall. The eye of the storm is 40 miles west of the city, toward Houma. Now, the Industrial Canal is being overtopped, and some runaway barges and tugboats are flying around in the area, and there are at least six hours to go here. But the absolute worst option has not materialized... yet. And I'm hopeful that the storm is far away enough that we won't see catastrophic flooding.

But you never know. The Port of New Orleans is underwater. If this was a Category 4 storm we'd be in a tremendous amount of trouble. The Army Corps of Engineers simply never built anything to stop water from Lake Pontchartrain to stream in through the Industrial Canal. If there's real breaching, the Lower Ninth is going to fill up. Again. (UPDATE: CNN reports "spurts of water" are coming into the Lower Ninth Ward already. This isn't that big a storm and the levees are already starting to fail.)