Urban Fold

Judge Rules Army Corps Responsible for New Orleans Flooding

A federal judge has ruled that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' mismanaged maintenance of the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet was the cause of flood damage in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

"'The failure of the Corps to recognize the destruction that the MRGO had caused and the potential hazard that it created is clearly negligent on the part of the Corps,' said U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval Jr. in his ruling. 'Furthermore, the Corps not only knew, but admitted by 1988, that the MRGO threatened human life ... and yet it did not act in time to prevent the catastrophic disaster that ensued with the onslaught of Hurricane Katrina.'"

The ruling likely sets the stage for what could be billions of dollars in claims against the government for property damage and loss in New Orleans' St. Bernard Parish and Lower Ninth Ward.

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