Entergy's New Orleans unit will consider bankruptcy filing

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Electricity and gas utility Entergy Corporation says Tuesday its New Orleans unit will consider filing for bankruptcy protection in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The utility says lower revenue and high restoration costs could leave that business short of cash.

Entergy's New Orleans unit has lost an estimated 130-thousand customers because of the hurricane. The utility estimates the unit's storm-related costs to be as high as 475 (m) $475 million dollars. The company put its total estimated costs for repairing and replacing electric and gas facilities damaged by the storm at 750 (m) million dollars to one-point-one (b) billion dollars.

Entergy delivers electricity to two-point-seven (m) million customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy also provides natural gas to nearly 240-thousand customers in Louisiana.