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New Orleans' improved flood defences were this week still under construction, with contractors missing their 1 June deadline that also marks the start of hurricane season (NCE 2 March). The US Army Corps of Engineers, has managed a £440M programme to restore the city's flood defences to a pre-hurricane Katrina level.

This has resulted in repairs to all breached levees. But the installation of floodgates on the city's three outflow canals has yet to be completed, with the 17th Street canal gate having just 12 of the 27 pumps it requires to keep water flowing out of New Orleans during a hurricane.

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