September 2nd, 2005


NASA sees damage from Katrina, sets up emergency site

NASA Hurricane site

Resent-Date: Fri, 02 Sep 2005 14:07:22 -0400

Ann Sullivan                                                    Sept. 2, 2005
NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.
Phone: 650/604-3039/604-9000



Members of NASA Ames Research Center's Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team (DART) are providing on-the-scene support to rescue efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

The NASA Ames Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at Moffett Field, Calif., has been activated and is coordinating with the NASA Headquarters EOC and with other EOCs throughout the agency supporting NASA's hurricane relief efforts. Robert J. Dolci, director of emergency services at NASA Ames, has been assigned to the NASA Headquarters EOC led by Bill Parsons, starting early next week.

NASA's Stennis Space Center near Gulfport, Miss., as well as the Michoud Assembly Facility near New Orleans, La., both were hit hard by the hurricane. Approximately 3,500 NASA civil service and contractor employees work at the two facilities, in addition to some 4,600 employees of other federal agencies.

On Aug. 30, DART provided one water rescue specialist as part of a 12-person flood response team sent to the hurricane zone by California Task Force 3 of Menlo Park, Calif.

Eight DART specialists currently are en route to Louisiana and are expected to arrive this afternoon. As many as 50 additional DART members may be deployed when requested by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

A six-person emergency communications team from NASA Ames will fly to Huntsville as soon as possible. The team also has shipped emergency communications equipment and has purchased $50,000 of satellite time to support satellite communications.

NASA has designated a telephone number (256/544-4700) for family members seeking information about people who may have sought shelter from Hurricane Katrina at Stennis Space Center and Michoud Assembly Facility. NASA also is taking e-mail inquiries about personnel sheltering at Stennis and Michoud. Use
"Assistance - Katrina" in the subject line, and send e-mail inquiries to:

In addition, NASA has established a toll-free number (888/362-4323) for recorded updates about general conditions at Stennis and Michoud.

NASA will provide updated information as it becomes available. For updates, visit

For more information about NASA Ames' Disaster Assistance and Rescue Team, visit:

-end -

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I Had No Idea

Okay, so I glommed this from leatherapron and tried on purpose to answer the questions in the least nerdy way I could without being downright dishonest, but it still gave me this rating:

I am nerdier than 92% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!
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For Pete's Sake

Pete Wilson launched into a 15-minute radio rant just as I was driving back to work from lunch. The gist of it is he has had shouting matches in the hall with people he likes and respects because they want to blame Bush for everything which has happened to NOLA and the surrounding area this week. He sounded like he was having a difficult time maintaining a professional on-air voice, I think he wanted to yell and scream.

This is what i emailed him:
Hi Pete,

I heard the first 10 minutes of your rant this afternoon on my way back from lunch. Or I think it was you - I'm not a regular listener, and the speaker did not give his name at the break.

Anyhow, you're right, this is not healthy. I was afraid you were going to have a heart attack right in front of the mike. We don't need that. Try not to take it so personally.

I hear what you are saying about not wanting to blame a president for what he doesn't do, but you're just plain wrong about that. When someone stands idly by who has the power to help, that person deserves some blame.

It was obvious to anyone who saw the satellite images or listened to any weather segment on the news last Saturday that a huge hurricane, possibly the biggest one ever, was going to hit somewhere in the general vicinity of New Orleans. By Sunday morning there was no doubt at all. And there was no doubt it was going to impact at least three states. What Bush should have done at that point was declare a national emergency, direct his Joint Chiefs to mobilize troops, equipment and supplies, and coordinate with the governors of the affected states to call out the National Guard.  To wait nearly a week to lift a finger? Insane.

Unfortunately, most of the National Guard are in Iraq. Maybe we can blame Bush for that?

You're right that Bush is not the only president to blame for the Army Corps not having the funding to build storm-proof levies.  But he's certainly one of them. Clinton couldn't do much - but he had a Republican House to contend with. As you know, it's the House which appropriates money for all Federal programs. And yes, you could blame every President since Jefferson, but I don't think we had  the technology until the 30's to really do this job.

Like you, I don't think this is about race. However, there can be no doubt that the majority of the people who could not afford to evacuate when the order was given are Black. Had Bush ordered the military to  mobilize before the hurricane struck, they might have been able to get everyone out who wanted to get out. It's too late now.

Best regards