Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans on Aug. 29, 2005, during the early morning hours. The category 3 hurricane, which also hit parts of Mississippi and Alabama, sustained winds of 100 to 140 miles per hour, killed almost 2,000 people and caused more than $100 billion in damages.
The storm surge was as high as 29.5 feet in New Orleans, overwhelming drainage canals and levies. The Coast Guard was able to rescue around 34,000 people, but there were tens of thousands displaced without food and shelter, despite the supplies and aid offered at the Superdome. At one point during the storm, nearly 80 percent of New Orleans was sitting in some quantity of water, according to the History Channel. Hurricane Katrina affected approximately 90,000 square miles of the United States.