Questions Still Not Answered About Faulty Pump at London Avenue Canal

These people are 24 feet below sea level at the London Ave pump station. Photo/Sandy Rosenthal

Six weeks ago, we learned at the board meeting of the Levee Authority East that there’s a problem with the new pump station at the London Avenue Canal.

The problem is one of the larger pumps; the bearing at the bottom was found to be overheating when operating. And there is no back up.

We immediately sent an email to the Chief of Public Affairs for the Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) New Orleans District, Ricky Boyett. We had three questions about the faulty pump. We did not receive a response.

So next we filed a formal request under the Freedom of Information Act and again, asked our three questions about the faulty pump. The corps responded exactly three weeks later; to wait longer would have been against the law. In the response the corps said we were asking questions as opposed to requesting documents. Therefore we needed to contact the Public Affairs office and just ask.

But this is exactly what we had already done and received no response! And now we are back to square one. So, we wrote AGAIN, to the Public Affairs office headed by Chief Ricky Boyett. Meanwhile, there’s a faulty pump at the London Avenue Canal. And no back up pump.

The Corps was responsible for the completion of the London Avenue Canal pump station. Based on the way, we, members of the public have been treated, we feel the corps is stalling. We don’t like this.

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Stark difference between Surfside condo collapse and New Orleans levee breach disaster


This image shows the aftermath of the Surfside condominium building collapse which occurred on June 24, 2021.

This week, Miami-Dade circuit judge Michael Hanzman gave final approval to a settlement for victims of the Champlain Towers South condominium collapse in Miami a year ago.

The families of 98 people who were killed will receive over a billion dollars in a settlement in addition to those who lost one of the 136 units in the beachfront building.

We see a glaring difference between the condo collapse in Surfside, Miami and levee breach event in New Orleans:

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A problem at the London Avenue Canal pump station

File photo April 2019. People are 24 feet below sea level at London Ave Canal pump station.  Photo/Sandy Rosenthal

We learned at the board meeting of the Levee Authority East that there’s a problem with the pump station at the London Avenue Canal.

Normally, the pump station––built after the levees broke in 2005––can pump about 9000 cubic feet of water per second (cfs).

We’ve learned that currently, two weeks prior to hurricane season, that the pumping capacity is reduced to 7200 cfs.

This is because the bearing at the bottom of one of the larger pumps was found to be overheating when operating.

This problem was discovered by the Orleans levee district when they performed their routine maintenance as directed by the Army Corps of Engineers.

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