New Orleans'London Avenue Canal
150-Day “Impossibility” Aided Katrina Recovery Team Effort
In December, 2006, the US. Army Corps of Engineers determined it needed eight massive, direct drive pumps to increase pumping capacity to 2.3 million gpm at New Orleans’ London Avenue Canal, the site of two major levee wall breaches during Hurricane Katrina. The problem was that they needed all eight pumps before the start of hurricane season in August 2007. With a normal lead time of 18-24 months for pumps this size, manufacturers considered the 150-day time frame an impossibility. Then Michael Pittman of M.R. Pittman Group, contractor, through Ronnie Hebert of Environmental Technical Sales (ETEC) approached Patterson’s engineers and president, Al Huber, about the project. Knowing the impact these pumps would make on the recovery effort, Patterson committed to the manufacture, delivery and testing of eight specially fitted, 68 in. x 72 in. H2O Works™ SAFV Mixed Flow Pumps in the 150-day period. “This challenge to engineer and supply these pumps from conception to delivery was difficult at best and had never been done before,” said Michael Pittman, M.R. PIttman Group. “From the day we awarded the contract, the whole Patterson group made a commitment to supply and fill the order in the time specified.” Patterson turned an “impossibility” into reality.