Katrina: Airborne Aid Workers Thwarted…


Crews Frustrated

Many who are trying to offer help to the devastated Gulf region are still grounded. Dr. Aziz Kamali, a family practitioner in Stockton, Calif., mobilized a volunteer group of 20 nurses willing to donate 7 to 10 days of vacation time to help out. Angel Flight America is ready and willing to fly them there, but having gone through “proper channels” as of Friday, Kamali still couldn’t get the OK to leave. The Louisiana governor’s office has told him, “‘We don’t know where to put you and how to use you,'” Kamali told The Stockton Record. They said they’ll get back to him. Dave Pechan, an Angel Flight pilot, told the Record that he was grounded for a week, ready and willing, but unable to get approval to fly. An agreement was signed in August with the Department of Homeland Security saying that pilots could be deployed within two hours of a disaster, but when the hurricane struck, that didn’t seem to help.