You’ll want to understand an important thing about New Orleans readers: we care about how you phrase things when reporting on the flood of 2005.

Bill Lodge’s Feb. 13 article about the Van Heerden/LSU settlement incorrectly characterizes Katrina, the hurricane, as having submerged New Orleans. In fact, the flood happened because the U.S. Corps of Engineers didn’t properly design, construct or maintain the federal flood-control levees surrounding the city.

The flood was a man-made disaster directly caused by the malfeasance and negligence of the Corps, who lied to the people of New Orleans about the fitness of the levees. Those levees failed while still within their design capacity; and those levee failures are what submerged the city, not some weather event.

Ray Lang

associate professor

New Orleans