Thursday, September 01, 2005

Those Who Chose Not to Evacuate 

Via Zemblan patriot J.D., a selection of newsblog and forum entries culled from the online version of the New Orleans Times-Picayune by Greg Mitchell of Editor & Publisher:
Latest text message from inside the hospital: ''Water dropping. Gunshots. Not safe.''

Through text messages and intermittent cell phone calls I have learned that 1300 patients and staff remain trapped mere blocks from the SuperDome at the University Hospital on Gravier Street. My girlfriend of 15 years is a 3rd OB/GYN resident there.

No power, food or water for 48+ hours.
Many dead are reported in the hospital.
No helipad exists.
No word from the outside world on a rescue or a plan.
The stench is said to be unbearable.

My coworker's brother is one of seven doctors who have been left behind at Touro Hospital. His name is Vinroot, I'm sorry, I don't know the first name. He is in a panic--the doctors have barricaded themselves on the seventh floor because armed gunmen are outside threatening them and demanding access to the roof so they can be rescued first. He is desperate. Someone needs to help these people NOW!

Spoke to my uncle this morning (Thurs) in Riverbend near Carrolton and St Charles. He and several (elderly) residents are holed up there and the security situation is getting desperate. Heat is extreme and there are roving gangs of looters with guns. The looters have also commandeered a backhoe and are ramming homes. My uncle and the others have no info about the evacuation. While Leake Avenue and River Road are dry, they are afraid to leave as they fear they will be shot, carjacked etc. This is a desperate plea for help as this is so far from downtown. We are trying to call everyone we can but of course the phone doesn't work. If someone official sees this, please send help.

My sister rode out storm in Biloxi. Her 18 yr old head trauma patient/daughter (Alyssa Taylor hit by drunk driver last year) is stuck with her with meds and tube foods running out quickly... Neighbors pooled their gas from mowers to get them out to no avail. They are urgently in need as are many others who cannot communicate out and are NOT receiving aid! My nephew left Georgia with Army with Chinook copters to rescue others in NOLA but he cannot divert to rescue his aunt and cousin... The after-dramas are worse than the storm and help is not reaching in and no one can leave without fuel.

There are still approximately over 300 Vietnamese people stranded in sewage water up to the necks in many areas gathered at the Mary Queen of VN Church. We've contacted USCG, Red Cross, news media but no help has come out to their way yet. As you all know, Versailles is so far on the eastern edge of New Orleans that by the time any helicopters come that way, they're already filled with people and have to turn back towards the Superdome to drop people off.

The water is still rising in that area. Many of the people are growing weak and sick from lack of food and water plus the heat. Some of them feel like they probably won't make it for the next day. Please people!!! do what you can to get these people to safe land.

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