An engineer paid by the US Army Corps of Engineers to peer review the federal study of the levee failures in New Orleans recently told a reporter that his panel’s scope was limited by rules placed on it by the Corps.
Thomas Jackson, past national president of ASCE and member of the External Review Panel (ERP) recently told Mark Schleifstein of the New Orleans Times Picayune,
“Our agreement with the corps was to do technical oversight of the investigation,” he said. “In the very beginning, we tried to get the corps to change our scope to include soft issues, such as organizational issues, and the infamous ‘drive-by’ inspection trips, and water leaking in the yards of homes adjacent to the 17th Street Canal. The corps specifically told us that was outside of our scope.” he said.
The peer reviewers were forbidden by the Corps to address non-technical issues yet when ASCE staffers conduct their power point presentations on what the experts found and lessons learned, ASCE repeatedly blames local and organizational dysfunction (albeit without basis) for much of the destruction.
Levees.Org believes the Corps controlled the federal investigation and also the peer review so that the Corps and ASCE could re-write history without a document that conflicted with their story.
Most obvious and egregious in the hour-long ASCE power points is failure to state that responsibility for the design, construction and performance of the metro New Orleans flood protection belongs exclusively to the US Army Corps of Engineers.
Please contact your members of Congress and demand the 8/29 Investigation Act, a truly independent analysis of the flood protection failures. Click here.