NEW ORLEANS -- The US Army Corps of Engineers pumped much of the remaining flood water from the city yesterday, as tens of thousands of residents continued returning to dry neighborhoods to check on houses and reopen businesses.
Water was still being pumped out of the heavily flooded Lower Ninth Ward. Officials expected the pumping to be completed today.
''There will still be some isolated pools here and there that aren't drained that will have to be pumped out individually," said Army Corps spokesman George Stringham.
Police reported few problems as tens of thousands of residents poured into the city yesterday, a day after Mayor C. Ray Nagin reopened some neighborhoods. ''Residents are very patient," police Captain Marlon Defillo said.
Defillo said that there have been no problems with a curfew, and that there have been only about a dozen arrests in the past few days, mostly for offenses such as trespassing. Nearly 1,500 New Orleans police officers are patrolling the streets in 12-hour shifts.
There were still 3,400 members of the National Guard in the New Orleans area, said Captain Jim Roth, a spokesman for the Air National Guard in South Carolina. The troops were participating in security patrols, water testing, water distribution, and other duties.
Electricity had been restored to about 28 percent of New Orleans and about 98 percent of Jefferson Parish, said Amy Stallings, a spokeswoman for
Electricity is still out in all of nearby St. Bernard Parish, but a destroyed transmission line was being repaired, Stallings said.
In another sign that life was returning to the city, St. Louis Cathedral in the French Quarter planned to celebrate Sunday Mass, its first since Hurricane Katrina. Archbishop Alfred C. Hughes planned to preside.
By Friday, the state health department had reported 932 deaths in Louisiana from Hurricane Katrina. Mississippi's death toll was 221.