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Calcasieu Parish response to Laura: Here's the latest

Posted at 6:26 PM, Aug 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-30 19:26:52-04

Calcasieu Parish officials held a briefing today to provide updates on Hurricane Laura recovery.

Here's the latest:

  • The National Guard will be distributing food, water, ice and tarps to residents from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 30 at the Lake Charles Civic Center and at McMurry Park, 300 Hazel St., Sulphur. One tarp per vehicle. The National Guard is working with the parish to make these commodities available in other parts of the parish. An announcement on new locations is expected soon.
  • The Red Cross has disaster supply and food sites at the two National Guard supply sites at McMurry Park, 300 S Hazel St., Sulphur, and the Lake Charles Civic Center. Additionally, the Red Cross also has a site at 2000 Moeling St., Lake Charles. They will provide items such as cots, mops, brooms, buckets, PPE, snacks and bottled water. Partnering with the Southern Baptists, Red Cross will also be providing two meals daily at these sites. For information, visit calcasieuparish.gov.
  • There will be free COVID-19 testing, as well as Tetanus and Hepatitis-A shots starting Wednesday, September 2, at the Gulfway Shopping Center, 115 West McNeese St. COVID-19 testing will be from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tetanus and Hepatitis-A shots will be from 9 a.m. to 3p.m.
  • The Calcasieu Parish Police Jury’s Animal Services and Adoption Center announced that only authorized personnel are allowed to provide animal rescue and sheltering for animals from Calcasieu Parish. Under no circumstances should animals be transported out of the parish or an emergency pet shelter be established without authorization from the Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. If you see an animal in distress, contact Animal Services at 337-853-9573.
  • Water service has been restored for some residents in the parish. City of Lake Charles water service is still extremely limited. All residents in Calcasieu Parish - including within municipalities - who are experiencing water outages are being urged to turn off their water at the roadside water valves if they are able to safely do so. Please contact your water system provider should you suspect a leak or other damage to your water system. Once water is restored, it is advised that residents adhere to a boil advisory until it is safe for those advisories to be lifted.
  • To register for FEMA federal disaster assistance, call 1-800-621-3362 or register online at disasterassistance.gov. If you have insurance, contact your adjuster and begin the insurance process.
  • Road conditions are dangerous throughout the parish. Many roads are still impassable. Power lines are dangling; most traffic lights are on the ground – drive slowly and carefully.
  • Officials are urging residents to practice generator safety. The parish has reported five deaths due to carbon monoxide poisoning this week. Make sure generators are installed correctly and never operate them in enclosed spaces.
  • Residents who wish to return to Calcasieu Parish will not be stopped from doing so, with the understanding that services are extremely limited, including water, power, gasoline, groceries and hospitals. Any citizens wishing to return are strongly encouraged to secure their homes then return to evacuation. Citizens who stay must be self-sufficient.
  • Residents who remain in the parish must adhere to the 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew. Essential employees should have their work IDs with them at all times. Deputies are stopping people out after curfew.
  • Most traffic signals are not working. When driving, treat every intersection as a four-way stop.
  • The parish, contractors and the National Guard have made much progress with debris clearance – they are finishing the “push phase” – pushing debris to the side of the road. The next phase of removal will begin in the next day or two.
  • Communications in the parish continues to be inconsistent. There are significant landline and cell phone system problems parish wide. Many agencies are experiencing radio problems.
  • Officials are asking residents to be practical with cell phone use. Text whenever possible and use short phone calls when necessary.
  • Officials with Entergy ( https://www.entergy.com/view-outages/ [entergy.com] ) and Beauregard Electric ( www.becioutage.org [becioutage.org]) say damage is extensive and widespread and that residents should expect to be out of electricity for several weeks.
  • Call United Way’s 211 to connect with resources for help.
  • Nearly all of the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury’s buildings sustained damage. As a result, all parish offices will be closed until further notice.
  • Calcasieu Parish schools will be closed until further notice. For information, visit https://www.cpsb.org/ [cpsb.org].

Here's the video of the full briefing:

The next briefing will be at 4 p.m. Monday, Aug. 31.