Engineers in New Orleans have begun to pump the city dry after fixing the biggest breaches in the city’s flood defences. However, it is now clear that this will take a long time, and that New Orleans will be uninhabitable for months. Pumping is having to be done with great care, to make sure the water does not put a new strain on the levees and create a fresh breach. Persuading those last survivors who stayed on in their homes that it is time to leave is now a priority. They may have lived through the disaster, but they will find it difficult to make a living in the aftermath; New Orleans is a shell of what it once was, with homes, businesses and infrastructures wrecked. Their jobs have gone, and the deputy police chief says there is “nothing left – the city has been completely destroyed.