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"New Orleans to re-examine its pump station policies"

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As controversy continues to churn about Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard's decision to evacuate more than 200 pump station workers the day before Hurricane Katrina, officials in New Orleans are vowing to take a hard look at their decision to require pump station workers to staff their posts, an order that endangered the lives of dozens of employees but allowed for the quick draining of a city that was more than 80 percent under water.
"We got pretty close to losing some people and I'm uncomfortable with that," Mayor Ray Nagin said last week. "We will have to take a fresh look when we get a chance to clear our heads."
Harrowing tales of survival abound in the ranks of the 100 Sewerage & Water Board pump station operators who, like police officers and firefighters, were required to wait out the storm while more than 1 million residents packed highways in search of higher ground...
Throughout the city, pump station workers committed countless acts of heroism as they struggled against unprecedented odds to survive and protect the equipment that would be key to the city's rebirth. In all, about half of the city's 22 major pumping stations flooded, and almost all received damage from the Category 4 hurricane's brutal winds and pelting rain. Complicating matters, the S&WB's power plant flooded, causing many pumps, which had already lost Entergy power, to shut down. The East Bank water plant also stopped working when the power failed, cutting off the tap water needed to cool the behemoth pumps, Moeinian said...