August 29th, 2008
02:22 PM ET

Toothpaste, underwear and even Red Bull

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Editor's Note: Anderson Cooper 360° is in New Orleans tonight, as Tropical Storm Gustav barrels toward the Gulf of Mexico, expected to reach Category 3. We'll look at whether New Orleans is ready, after being devastated by Hurricane Katrina exactly three years ago today. Watch our special report tonight at 10p ET.

Dan Simon
CNN Correspondent

Of course, all of us remember the utter devastation.

One block after the next was under several feet of water. But from a reporting standpoint, one of the first things that comes to mind about Katrina was the infrastructure put in place by CNN.

Obviously, there was no access to gas stations, stores, etc. Within days of the storm, the network had created its own mini 'Costco' for its staff. Notepads, hats, suntan lotion, toothpaste, underwear and even Red Bull was available to all of us covering the story. (Though whoever was in charge of purchasing, went a little overboard on the grape jelly. There were literally pallets of the stuff in HUGE containers.)

It was quite impressive to see how the network had built up this infrastructure from nothing. A lot of us wondered why the government couldn’t be as efficient.

Filed under: Dan Simon • Hurricane Katrina
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Annie Kate

    CNN could do better because it cared about its people – the Bush administration showed his total disregard of the people with their lackluster performance in NOLA.

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    August 29, 2008 at 10:27 pm |
  2. Marcia, Warren MI

    Why couldn't the government be so efficient? Because they were denying there was even a problem. Even the officials from the state of LA were denying there was a problem. And when Bush came to deliver a speech a few days after Katrina and they lit up Jackson Square it gave false sense of hope to the people there. Hearing Nagin the other night talk about how prepared the city is if Gustav hits them I'm hoping they are prepared and its not just a lot of talk again. Maybe the mayor should stop accepting awards he doesn't deserve and work at helping his city get back to life.

    August 29, 2008 at 2:30 pm |