Saturday, November 17, 2007

Your Tax Dollars at Work

The Associated Press: Mistakes Made in New Orleans Flood Maps So they built all kinds of floodgates and added pumps everywhere around New Orleans. It was supposed to give 5.5 feet of protection to the city. Turns out the number is more like 6 inches. Is anyone surprised?
The maps showed that the improvements made to the city canals' drainage systems would reduce flooding during a major storm by about 5.5 feet in Lakeview and nearby neighborhoods. The maps were based on a storm that has the likelihood of occurring at least once in 100 years.

But in a report released Nov. 7, Corps scientists estimated that the actual benefit the system would provide would be just 6 inches.

The discrepancy was tucked into the voluminous report's appendices, and neither the Corps nor the scientists hired to conduct the study brought the changes to the public's attention when the report was released. It wasn't until New Orleans television station WWL-TV asked an engineer involved in the assessment about the discrepancy that it became known.
Yeah, that sounds about right for government work.

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