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Hurricane Katrina was a category four storm that formed on 23rd August 2005. It hit New
Orleans at 6:10am on 25th August. Wind speeds reached 170mph and storm surges were
over six meters high.
Hurricanes can often cause the sea level around them to rise. This effect is known as a
storm surge. New Orleans was badly affected by the hurricane because it lies below sea level
and is protected by leeves. These protect it from the Mississippi River and Lake Ponchartrain.
However, the leeve defences were unable to cope with the strength of Katrina, and water
flooded into the city.
New Orleans was badly damaged by the flooding caused by storm surges. Almost eighty
percent of the city was flooded, with water up to six feet deep in some areas. The heavy
rainfall produced by hurricane Katrina also contributed to flooding.
Hurricane Katrina left almost one million people homeless, and destroyed thousands of
businesses. More than 1,500 people lost their lives as a result of hurricane Karina, and 705
people are still missing today. Criminal gangs roamed the streets, looting homes and
businesses because of food shortages. Hurricane Katrina damaged electricity, water and
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Telecommunications failed, and water diseases spread rapidly.
Hurricane Katrina badly damaged the environment of New Orleans. 1.3 million acres of trees
were lost, and farmland was ruined by saltwater. Water supplies were polluted with sewage
and chemicals. Hurricane Katrina damaged coastal habitats. Toxic chemicals were also
Hurricane Katrina was the most expensive hurricane in American history, coating 300 billion
dollars. Businesses were destroyed, and 230,000 jobs were lost.…read more