Jejudo, South Korea
Should he have used the buses?
But Pruden dramatically overstated the number of New Orleans school buses. As of 2003, the most recent year for which data appears to be available, the Orleans Parish school district, which operates New Orleans' public schools, owned only 324 school buses. In addition, a Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development profile of the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority (RTA), last updated May 5, notes that RTA owned 364 public buses, bringing the total of the city's public transit and school buses to fewer than 700 (assuming the fleet of school buses has not been dramatically increased since 2003), far fewer than the 2,000 Pruden claimed. Even so, Pruden's claim was repeated that evening on Fox News' Hannity & Colmes by co-host Sean Hannity, who insisted, "Two thousand buses sat; 2,000 school buses." The falsehood was echoed the next day by Fox news political analyst and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (R-GA), who baselessly suggested that the city owned more than enough buses to help every poor person leave the city. And In a September 11 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette column, national security writer Jack Kelly asked, "[W]hy weren't the roughly 2,000 municipal and school buses in New Orleans utilized to take people out of the city before Katrina struck?"
Why do we have a dramatic change in the numbers?
In fact, The New York Times reported on September 4 that Louisiana emergency planners believed it would take as many as 2,000 buses "to evacuate an estimated 100,000 elderly and disabled people" in the event of a catastrophic hurricane like Katrina. But, The New York Times wrote, this was "far more than New Orleans possessed."
That is, the shift in numbers coincide with what was needed to evacuate all those in NO.