Katrina: Rescue Helicopter Crashes, Crew Rescued
A helicopter working to rescue and deliver supplies to New Orleans residents trapped by the flooding caused by Hurricane Katrina crashed tonight. Fortunately, the crew survived and were themselves rescued by the Coast Guard.
Military helicopters circled above New Orleans on Sunday to drop supplies and rescue people trapped for a sixth day in the nearly deserted city. The Coast Guard asked anyone still stranded in New Orleans “to hang brightly colored or white sheets, towels or anything else” to help rescuers locate them.
Underscoring the dangerous nature of the operation, a helicopter crashed northwest of downtown New Orleans Sunday evening. The pilot and crew were rescued, said those aboard another helicopter hovering above just after the crash. The mangled Eurocopter AS 332 Super Puma was lying on its side about four miles from downtown. The Coast Guard carried the crew from the scene on another helicopter.
Authorities were able to clear out tens of thousands who took refuge at the Louisiana Superdome and Ernest Morial Convention Center, suffering for days in intense heat with little food or water.
“It’s essentially a ghost town,” said CNN’s Soledad O’Brien, who was near the convention center. “There’s nobody here on a major long weekend in the heart of New Orleans.”