John McQuaid, who won the Pulitzer Prize for his series in the Times-Picayne predicting massive flooding in New Orleans, called Katrina evacuation “the most successful in New Orleans history.” Ironically enough, this comment appeared on a moderated chat by Campus Progress. In the transcript McQuaid said:
[T]his was the most successful evacuation in NO history. They got around 80 percent of the entire metro area to depart – the previous record was about 60 percent. And for those that did leave, it went pretty smoothly relative to past attempts.
[New Orleans Mayor] Nagin could have done more to have an evacuation plan. That said, there are limits to how many people who didn’t want to leave could have been forcibly removed in the space of a day or two. So even if they had a good evacuation. plan, there still would have been people left behind, trapped, etc.