Governor Edwards to Tour Storm Damaged Louisiana Today
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards is no stranger to natural disasters. During his tenure as Governor, he has seen his share of hurricanes, floods, ice storms, and of course the ongoing pandemic. Today, the Governor hopes to see for himself just how badly the southeastern parishes of the state were damaged by Hurricane Ida.
Edwards had hoped to fly into the storm zone yesterday but air space was needed for multiple rescues. According to the Governor, who relayed this information during a press conference yesterday afternoon, National Guard crews had rescued 191 citizens and 27 pets from the affected areas of the state. Those crews even did helicopter rescue missions for victims in flood-ravaged LaPlace and Lafitte.
Rescue and search crews will be going out again today. This time in a more organized search pattern. Most of Monday's rescues were the result of 911 calls made to various emergency operations centers during the day on Sunday.
In his remarks yesterday, Edwards was quick to remind evacuees from the storm to not try and return home right now. In many places the roads are impassable and there are trees and powerlines blocking roadways. The Governor asks you to exercise patience in planning your return. State officials will make it quite clear when conditions are such that your safe return is possible.
So far, only two deaths have officially been attributed to Hurricane Ida. One of those happened in Prairieville when a tree fell on a home Sunday evening. It was also reported yesterday that a New Orleans motorist drowned when they drove their car around barricades.
Still, there's another, only in Louisiana, kind of story involving a fatality from Slidell. St. Tammany Parish Deputies say a man walking in floodwaters near his home was attacked and presumed killed by an alligator. So far, deputies have not found the man's body. The incident was reported by his wife.
As if to add insult to injury, the National Weather Service Office has issued a heat advisory for much of the storm-affected areas of the state. Heat index values could be well into the triple digits this afternoon. For those working in and around the area, this could become a concern because of the lack of air conditioning and fans.
There is also a 50% chance of showers and thunderstorms across the storm zone. This could inhibit rescue and recovery operations as well.
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