Originally Posted By Itchy:
I'm not buying it.
Emergency generators at Charity and University hospitals out of fuel
By Jan M oller
The emergency generators at Charity and University hospitals in downtown New Orleans ran out of fuel and shut down at 8 a.m. today, worsening an already intolerable situation for about 350 patients and more than 1,000 doctors, nurses and evacuees who sought shelter there.
Donald Smithburg, who heads Louisiana State University's Health Care Services Division, said he's been told that fuel is available a few blocks from the hospitals' downtown New Orleans campus, but that authorities have not yet figured out how to transport it through the flooded streets to the hospitals.
"It's my understanding that the fuel is nearby, it's just a problem of getting to it,'' Smithburg said. "I think the state is as frustrated as we are in findings ways to get it transported just a few blocks.''
The hospitals, which host the only Level 1 trauma center in southeast Louisiana and also serve as teaching hospitals for LSU's medical school, lost power during Katrina and lost use of their main emergency generator due to flooding. Since then, they had been receiving power from a number of smaller generators that have been used to support essential medical equipment.
It has no water, sewerage or air conditioning and the lights have not been used in an effort to conserve electricity, Smithburg said.
Although the trauma center was moved from ground level to a higher floor at Charity before the floodwaters set in, the waters are too high for the hospitals to admit any new patients, Smithburg said. Instead, the hospital is hoping to evacuate its patients to public hospitals in Alexandria, Lafayette, Shreveport, Lake Charles and Monroe.
Smithburg said disaster medical teams are en route to Louisiana from Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, and that the charity system has enough physicians and other staff to handle the job. "I think it's not a question of having enough doctors and medics (in New Orleans). It's a question of getting the patients out of New Orleans,'' Smithburg said.
About 20 patients on ventilators were evacuated Tuesday around nightfall, Smithburg said.
Office of Homeland Security spokesman Mark Smith said Wednesday morning that Coast Guard and Department of Wildlife and Fisheries rescue workers are also focused on evacuating about 1,000 patients from Methodist Hospital.
The LSU hospitals in Bogalusa and Houma also suffered storm damage and will not be receiving evacuees, Smithburg said.
Wednesday, August 31, 2005
Peeling open a store
Looters went to extraordinary means to get into the Rite Aid drug store on Carrollton Avenue and Oak Street in Uptown New Orleans, where metal storm doors were rolled shut on the doors and windows.
Looters commandered a fork lift, which they used to ram into the metal and peel open the protective covering to get inside the store. That allowed a steady stream of looters, many wheeling shopping carts, to stock up, primarily with food, candy, any soft drink or water or alcohol, and cigarettes.
After much of the store had been emptied, a pair of looters carrying handfuls of candy and chips stopped briefly to talk to a newspaper reporter.
"They still have come canned foods in there if you want some."