One year after Hurricane Katrina practically wiped the Gulf Coast off the map, WRAL looks back at the disaster with a special series of news stories. WRAL-TV Reporter Amanda Lamb and News Photographer Ed Wilson traveled back to the Gulf Coast to revisit the areas from which they reported immediately after the storm. Their stories will run during WRAL’s evening news all this week.
The pair returned to Slidell, where rebuilding is slow, as it is all along the Gulf Coast, due to a lack of workers and supplies. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has removed 42 million cubic yards of debris from Louisiana. And FEMA trailers have become a problem as well, including a huge delay in removing the FEMA trailers where they are no longer needed and still obtaining FEMA trailers for those who need them.
Lamb and Wilson also report on the French Quarter economy. Tourism is still down by about 60 percent, and one business owner told them that the French Quarter is the lifeblood of the city and needs to overcome this economic downturn in order for New Orleans to survive.
Finally Lamb and Wilson visited the Pass Christian High School near Gulfport. Eighty percent of the people are still displaced, which includes most of the school’s 406 students. They’ve not had a home game on the football field since Katrina, but this Friday will be the first. The event will be a big morale booster for them.
Tune in to WRAL’s evening newscasts this week for more about these amazing stories.
Thanks to WRAL-TV’s Brad Grantham for these capcom photos.