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Last updated 5:22AM ET
February 27, 2021
Lessons Learned From Katrina Pay Off During Gustav
(APR - Alabama Public Radio ) - Alabama shelters are housing more than twice as many evacuees from Hurricane Gustav than they did from Hurricane Katrina three years ago.

The American Red Cross says more than 11,000 people have used shelters in the state. That compares to about 5,400 following Katrina.

The two reasons for the increase are the mandatory evacuations in New Orleans and the opening of shelters at community colleges across the state.

Gov. Bob Riley and community college Chancellor Bradley Byrne says the first-time shelters at community colleges have done well. They are housing about 6,500 people.

Riley says Alabama ended up with more evacuees than it had planned on, but the state was able to adjust well.

The number of evacuees in Alabama motels and hotels far exceeds those in shelters. State Tourism Director Lee Sentell estimates that 132,000 evacuees are staying in Alabama hotels and motels tonight. Sentell says most of the evacuees are from Louisiana.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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