The boxes are stacked eight feet high and line the walls of the large, windowless room. Inside them are new body bags, 10,000 in all. If a big, slow-moving hurricane crossed the Gulf of Mexico on the right track, it would drive a sea surge that would drown New Orleans under 20 feet of water. "As the water recedes," says Walter Maestri, a local emergency management director, "we expect to find a lot of dead bodies."
from Scientific American in October of 2001 comes this prescient article. we have evidently known for a long, long time what would happen if a large hurricane were to hit Louisiana and yet we (as a government) have done worse than nothing. we gutted federal disaster relief to one of the few areas everyone knew would suffer the most.