Our power is finally up as of yesterday evening. I was bicycling over to Tracey's to catch the LSU game when I noticed crews in bucket trucks making their way down St. Charles Avenue. They were using a hook at the of a long pole to tug violently at the power lines. The man operating the hook let out a primal scream as he tugged as though his actions would free the Scottish clans. I took this as a good sign.
About a half hour later at Tracey's, where there was power already, the lights flickered briefly thus interrupting the game on television and causing the Tiger fans to shout like newly violated Krystal patrons. But this was also good news. Or at least I thought so. It meant Entergy was in the area trying to flip the lights on which, even after the extensive damage from Isaac, were still more easily illuminated than the light in Les Miles' head.
And sure enough about twenty minutes later Menckles texted me from back at the hunker bunker to let me know the lights were coming on, the a/c was working, and people (seriously) were out in the streets blowing horns and dancing around and shit like they had just won the Super Bowl.
So we're back up over here. Still can't say the same for roughly 250,000 more Entergy customers, but at least now we know the technology still exists to electrify the area.
Meanwhile today, in addition to the extended cabin fever, we're suffering from a bit of electricity guilt so I'm taking Menckles out to Slidell to give blood. Here's where you can go if you'd like to do the same.
In the meantime, the following are some links I saw while thumbing through my half-charged phone which I thought were worth marking for further discussion.
Mark Schleifstein: Isaac's surge would have created a Betsy-like flood without post-Katrina levee improvements
Like I said the other day, Congress invested in bulking up the city's flood protection after Katrina. That investment was obviously worth every cent. But it's also clear that much more needs to be done to protect our coast and our region if we expect our walled city to remain sustainable.
WWLTV: 17th street canal pumps forced to be started manually Tuesday night
NEW ORLEANS — Pumps at the 17th Street canal failed to turn on automatically Tuesday night, forcing pump operators to manually start the system, the Corps of Engineers said Thursday.Some dude still had to go out and pull the ripcord. Also, thanks to Clay, here's the Texas contractor who sold the faulty remote control system to the Corps. They seem pretty proud of it.
The pumps did work as designed. However, when water reached the 6½ foot maximum operating level in the canal, operators attempted to start the pumps from a remote control system but it didn’t work.
Crew responded by going out to the pumps and starting them manually.
Jarvis Deberry: Hurricane Isaac's view from television is no match for real life: Jarvis DeBerry
I'd like to return to this subject later but I'm flagging it now so I won't forget. The pronouncements of our tele-celebs and our elected officials during an event like Isaac make for a compelling theater of the absurd. Just scroll down to the pre-outage posts on this site to see our attempts at documenting some of that. But it's also badly distorts facts for anyone not willing to tediously filter out the bullshit. As a result there will be loads of misinformation about what just happened we'll be dealing with in the coming months. I'm a bit worried there will be an attempt to blame citizens and news consumers rather than politicians and media producers for this. It's something I'll have an eye on.
Finally, Charles Rice, CEO of Entergy. Yeah, there's plenty dirt there. He's already sort of the Michael Brown of this storm but it could be worse than that, even. Something to watch.