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September 2, 2005 – CBS Radio News – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
September 2, 2005 – Two days after making landfall, Katrina was front-and-center in the minds of anyone watching or listening to the news this day.
Hurricane Katrina was a large Category 5 Atlantic hurricane that caused over 1,800 deaths and $125 billion in damage in late August 2005, particularly in the city of New Orleans and the surrounding areas. It was at the time the costliest tropical cyclone on record and is now tied with 2017’s Hurricane Harvey. The storm was the twelfth tropical cyclone, the fifth hurricane, and the third major hurricane of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season, as well as the fourth-most intense Atlantic hurricane on record to make landfall in the contiguous United States.
Those were the cold-hard facts. But the human toll, aside from the numbers of dead were the numbers of displaced and distraught. Whole neighborhoods vanished; swept away or reduced to shards and splinters – flood waters and seas of mud; nothing receding for days – stagnant water, stifling heat, no electricity – no food – stranded on rooftops, waiting for rescue.
Katrina displaced over one million people from the central Gulf coast to elsewhere across the United States, becoming the largest diaspora in the history of the United States. Houston, Texas, had an increase of 35,000 people; Mobile, Alabama, gained over 24,000; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, over 15,000; and Hammond, Louisiana, received over 10,000, nearly doubling its size. Chicago, Illinois received over 6,000 people, the most of any non-southern city. By late January 2006, about 200,000 people were once again living in New Orleans, less than half of the pre-storm population. By July 1, 2006, when new population estimates were calculated by the U.S. Census Bureau, the state of Louisiana showed a population decline of 219,563 or 4.87%. Additionally, some insurance companies stopped insuring homeowners in the area because of the high costs from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, or have raised homeowners’ insurance premiums to cover their risk.
And so it goes – and so it went, this September 2, 2005 as reported by CBS Radio.
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