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Gov. Edwards requests presidential emergency declaration for severe winter weather

Edwards outlines $300M in planned coastal project spending
Posted at 10:00 PM, Feb 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-17 23:02:08-05

BATON ROUGE, La.  — Gov. John Bel Edwards announced Wednesday that he has sent a letter to President Joseph R. Biden requesting a Presidential emergency declaration as severe winter weather continues to impact the state.

According to a release from the governor's office, the weather has left three people dead and tens of thousands of people without electricity and water for several days with more impacts likely over the next two days.

The governor said he requested direct federal assistance, specifically commodities and supplies in response to the extended power outage and also Emergency Protective measures under the FEMA Public Assistance program.

Severe weather started in Louisiana on February 11, 2021, with a second round of storms beginning on February 17, the release states. More than 200,000 people were without power on the morning of February 16, 2021 and as of Wednesday, February 17, 62,000 Louisiana households still did not have power.

In addition, there are 36 water outages throughout 18 parishes and 178 boil water advisories throughout 39 parishes. In total, more than 48,000 Louisianans do not have water and more than 956,000 live in areas with boil water advisories.

In addition to managing the COVID pandemic, Louisiana is currently recovering from multiple hurricanes from 2020, including Hurricane Laura and Hurricane Delta.

Click here to read the Governor’s letter to the President.

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