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View Diary: Can FEMA Do Anything Right? (222 comments)

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  •  Trib's Bataan report understates the ineptitude (none)
    Upthread there's some discussion about the USS Bataan, and there's mention of a generally excellent article ("Navy ship nearby underused";link). Unfortunately, the article has a couple of important factual errors which have the effect of understating the ineptitude.

    Hedges writes: "When the city's levees broke Tuesday, Tyson's pilots were rescuing stranded residents." He's suggesting these two events were simultaneous. In reality, they were separated by roughly 48 hours.

    WHEN DID LEVEE BREACHES OCCUR?

    It has been widely reported that levees broke on Tuesday. However, this appears to be only when Chertoff finally noticed. The fact is that numerous reports indicate multiple levees were breached on Monday. The National Weather Service reported a levee breach Monday at 8:14 am. Copious supporting citations can be found here and here.

    WHEN DID BATAAN-BASED COPTERS START AIR-LIFTING SURVIVORS?

    As far as when "Tyson's pilots" began "rescuing stranded residents," this appeared to not happen until Wednesday, after daylight. I make this claim based on a report on the Bataan's own web site (link). According to this report, "crews flew off Tuesday night" but "it got too dark and it was too risky to land anywhere." Therefore, "we just flew Tuesday night to survey the area."

    According to this report, Bataan-based crews airlifted no survivors until Wednesday, after daylight. In other words, the claim that "Tyson's pilots were rescuing stranded residents" on Tuesday appears to be incorrect.

    This is relevant to a false claim made by Keating, also mentioned upthread.

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