Hurricane Laura was an unprecedented hurricane, and the aftermath is just as unusual, because of COVID-19.
Because of the threat of the virus, the state is not opening huge shelters as it has done in the past. For now, the state has opened "reception centers" which help evacuees find non-congregant shelter. It's more of a processing center than the shelters we've had in the past.
Most evacuees are being sent to hotels, officials say. But you must go to the reception center to get a hotel room that is being paid for by state or federal disaster funds.
The current Reception Center is at the Alexandria MegaShelter. Evacuees in need of shelter must go to the reception center to be placed in a non-congregate shelter as one becomes available, officials say.
Anyone who arrives directly at a hotel will not be admitted and will be required to go to the reception center.
The reception center will be open 24/7 until further notice:
Alexandria Reception Center
8125 Hwy 71 South
Alexandria, LA 71302
You can also get this information by texting LAShelter to 898-211 or by calling 2-1-1.
You can also call FEMA for individual assistance, depending on where you live. FEMA Individual Assistance has been turned on for Region 5, Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Vernon and Jeff Davis Parishes. Any evacuee from those parishes who needs assistance should immediately contact FEMA either by calling 1-800-621-3362 or by going online to www.disasterassistance.gov.