On the 28th August 2005, a warning was issued predicting severe damage to New Orleans and the surrounding areas from the approaching storm. Hurricane Katrina presented catastrophic and long lasting effects on New Orleans and surrounding areas. The centre of the storm passed East of New Orleans on the 29th August 2005. It is estimated that by the time Katrina came ashore, approximately 1 million people had fled the city and surrounding areas with a further 25 to 30 thousand remaining in the city.
By the 31st of August 2005, 80% of New Orleans was flooded with some areas under 15 feet of water. The extensive flooding stranded many of those that chose to stay behind, some were trapped on the roof tops of houses, some inside houses and attics unable to escape. Most major roads were damaged.