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Iberia Medical Center is still undergoing renovations after tornado

Renovations and restoration continue at The Iberia Media Center, following tornado roughly four months ago.
Iberia Medical Center.PNG
Posted at 9:42 PM, Apr 25, 2023

The New Iberia Medical Center is undergoing a face lift, following a tornado that destroyed the building in December.

CEO of Iberia Medical Center, Dionne Viator said 80 percent of the renovations are complete, but the remaining 20 percent will happen gradually.

"Our priority has been on the interior of the building," Viator said.

General Surgeon Kurt O'Brien said he and his colleagues initially ignored the tornado alerts they received on their phones back in December, but soon realized they had to rush to the nearest stairwell to take safety.

"We all went out there and we looked and sure enough, we could see the tornado coming across the cane field at us and we could see the debris flying up," O'Brien said. "I was like okay guys. It's time to go get in the stairwell...we all hustled and we got in the stairwell...when the tornado hit, you could feel the pressure change, you could feel your ears popping, you could hear the glass breaking."

Viator said so far, a new roof and improvements to both the interior and exterior of the building have been done, but supply change issues are causing a delay for the glass windows.

Jacob Freyou, Vice President of Outpatient Operations said every, single glass pane will be replaced by materials that are three times as strong as the previous.

"We've had to re-make dyes and we're custom-fabricating those individual pieces for the correct installation," Freyou said.

Reconstruction is expected to last until the end of the year.