I recently read a blog entry by a New Orleans resident who plans on staying in the city even if an evacuation is called for again. Now it seems pretty certain to me that one will be called for -- the levees just are not good enough to hold against a direct storm landfall.
OK, this person has a house that survived the last storm. That is probably good. If I were planning to stay, however, I would put a few things in my attic:
1) an axe
2) water -- bottles and gallons and maybe a few huge jugs
3) a Rubbermaid tub of camping food
4) a radio with a windup battery
5) several flashlights with shake-and-light batteries
6) air mattresses
7) an inflatable raft
8* another Rubbermaid tub with soap, utensils, pots, towels -- all that good camping stuff including screwdriver, hammer and pliers.
With all of that, if I planned to rescue my animals I'd have their carriers and another raft. But the sad things is that in a really bad emergency, animals get left behind.
New Orleans was once an enviable place to live. The lack of solid reconstruction where it counts -- the closed hospitals and schools, the failure to build good dams and walls, makes it a tragedy waiting to repeat. Some people will survive, but the city may never come back until there is a serious effort to hold back the water.