An an Example of What Went Right with Katrinia
A Coast Guard search and rescue crew from a St. Louis, Mo., based Disaster Area Response Team drags their skiff to a launching point on South Carrollton Avenue in New Orleans. Photo credit: U.S Coast Guard
Watching the media, you can help to see all the information on what went wrong when Katrinia devastated the Gulf region. Little has been said about what went right. In an article found on the Daily Press, there was one part of our response that performed admirably, the U.S. Coast Guard.
Some may think that we do not want the military, to be the first responders in an American disaster. But you have to appreciate that the military is trained and is well skilled with a can do attitude in the mist of chaos. In fact the military does love chaos, because when the enemy is fumbling they know exactly what to do, you can look at the beginning of the war in Iraqi to see how our military machine works.
In Katrinia, there was no effective command and control structure, and organization suffered. Its one thing, for a group of well meaning civil authorities to sit in committee to iron out approaches and to also disagree. Its another, to have a clear chain of command, and know that orders will be obeyed, actions will be taken, and results will be seen. And the Coast Guard did just that. This is from the Daily Press:
"Forty-three Coast Guard helicopters from 11 air stations converged on the Gulf Coast in the wake of Hurricane Katrina to save more that 12,500 lives. Coast Guard small boats and cutters rescued 11,600 more, and combined service units evacuated 9,400 patients from hospitals."
"Most of the rescues occurred from Aug. 30, the day after Katrina hit, through Sept. 3, when an unprecedented swarm of Coast Guard units was joined by units from other armed forces, as well as federal, state and local law agencies."