New Orleans Disaster Forecast In 2004 CU-Boulder Publication

first_imgShare Share via TwitterShare via FacebookShare via LinkedInShare via E-mail The Natural Hazards Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder commissioned a series of six articles in 2004 titled “Disasters Waiting to Happen,” one of which focused on a major hurricane striking New Orleans. The article titled “What if Hurricane Ivan Had Not Missed New Orleans” was authored by Shirley Laska of the University of New Orleans’ Center for Hazards Assessment, Response and Technology. It was published last November and is posted on the Natural Hazard Center’s Web site at Since the impact of Hurricane Katrina, the article has been getting a lot of attention, said Greg Guibert, the center’s program manager. Laska’s article predicted that if Hurricane Ivan, a category 4 or 5 storm, had directly struck the city that it would fill the city “bowl” with water up to 20 feet deep, could take up to 10 days to rescue all of those stranded in the city and up to nine weeks to pump all the water out. It estimated as many as 60,000 people could die and that the storm would cause more than $100 billion in damages. The article appeared in the Natural Hazards Observer, a bimonthly periodical of the Natural Hazards Center. It covers current disaster issues and is sent to more than 15,000 subscribers in the United States and abroad. The “Disasters Waiting to Happen” series also included the volcanic eruption of Mount Rainier, a bioterrorism attack in Pasadena, Calif., a flash flood in Boulder, Colo., and a Southern California earthquake. The CU-Boulder Natural Hazards Center is the nation’s leading repository of knowledge on human behavior in disasters. It is part of CU-Boulder’s Institute of Behavioral Science and is funded by grants from NSF, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, other federal agencies and private-sector funders. More information and back issues of the Natural Hazards Observer, and other center publications relevant to Hurricane Katrina, are posted on the center’s Web site at Published: Sept. 7, 2005 last_img read more