RUSTON, La. — Gov. John Bel Edwards gave a press briefing on Thursday at Ruston Regional Airport to give an update on the state's recovery after taking part in a flyover of Center and North Louisiana to survey damage caused by Hurricane Laura.
The governor confirmed that there are now 10 fatalities across the state after Hurricane Laura. He said that four fatalities were from trees falling on homes, one fatality from drowning and five fatalities from carbon monoxide poisoning.
Edwards warned residents not to operate generators indoors or in very poorly ventilated areas where carbon monoxide poisoning can be a real hazard until their power can be restored.
The governor also said that he is optimistic that power restoration across the state is going to happen relatively rapidly.
"We had more power crews pre-positioned ahead of the storm than ever before in the history of our state," said Edwards. "I think that was a very smart thing to do because that was the strongest storm to strike Louisiana."
The governor said that he requested a major federal disaster declaration that was approved Friday by the White House that he expects to be turned around very quickly.
He said this will enable the state to receive even more federal assistance to aid with recovery operation around the state.
The governor said that national guard units are working across the state with recovery operations, but will resume working on administering COVID-19 testing on Monday.
You can watch the full press briefing below:
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