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FEMA Convoy Gets Ice to Cities Not in Need

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  • FEMA Convoy Gets Ice to Cities Not in Need

    FEMA Convoy Gets Ice to Cities Not in Need

    By WOODY BAIRD, Associated Press Writer Mon Sep 12,11:35 PM ET

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - About 200 tractor-trailer trucks with ice and water for victims of Hurricane Katrina took a convoluted, weeklong trip to a storage depot in Memphis, partly because of what the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers called "miscommunication."
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    The drivers were sent to cities that didn't end up needing water or ice and were final directed to Memphis, said Corps spokesman Bob Anderson.

    "They're in the right place now," Anderson said Monday. He said the problem trip may have resulted from "miscommunication, a breakdown in communication between FEMA and the Corps."

    The trucks are leased by the
    Federal Emergency Management Agency, while the Corps is responsible for getting them to where they are needed in Mississippi and Louisiana. Memphis has a Corps storage facility where relief supplies are held before being shipped south.

    No one went without water because of the mix-up, Anderson said.

    "Our supply of ice and water is exceeding the demand right now," Anderson said. "The ice and water will not be wasted."

    The 18-wheelers, under contract for up to $900 a day, are part of a relief operations that already has sent more than 5,300 trucks of ice and water to New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, Anderson said.

    Drivers said they picked up their loads a week ago and were sent to Meridian, Miss., before being dispatched to Selma, Ala., and finally to Memphis. Some also were detoured through Hattiesburg, Miss., drivers said.

    Jeff Henderson of Dade City, Fla., picked up his load near Grand Rapids, Mich.

    "I drove all the way up from Florida to Michigan thinking I was going to help these people out and now I've been sitting on this load for over seven days," Henderson said. "Somebody dropped the ball somewhere."
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