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Lake Charles preparing for potentially severe weather with increased drainage expenditures

lc flooding.jpg
Posted at 10:31 PM, Jun 17, 2021

Although Southwest Louisiana isn't expected to see much from the system in the Gulf, for many in Lake Charles, it's a good reminder to prepare for the season ahead.

There is still so much work underway to recover from last year. Now with a system in the Gulf, operations are ramping up to reduce an immediate concern of flooding.

"This is our home and we don't want to leave our home,” said Priscilla Simien.

Simien has called this home for 17 years. After two hurricanes and the recent flooding, the home is now gutted and ridden with mold, and finding help has been a challenge.

"I have homeowners insurance but my homeowners told me that they can't help me. We just need help here because everybody on these streets is leaving. We've been long-time residents and it's like a ghost town around here,” Simien.

A ghost town she fears will only increase if they don't receive help.

"It might seem like to the rest of the world that everything is okay but when you come down Kirkman and other these other streets, you're going to see all the debris in people's yards,” Simien explained.

Following the severe flooding last month, the city council approved to move an additional $3 million dollars for drainage expenses, plus an additional $20 million dollars to address drainage issues throughout the city.

"A lot of that debris, a lot of the vegetation, and a lot of stuff in people's yards, and it pushed it into our drainage system. We're working very diligently right now to try to get those areas clean, to help do the best we can, and trying to manage this event. We believe that's going to go a long way in helping us expedite this drainage improvement,” said Lake Charles City Administrator John Cardone.

As weather patterns continue to shift east, Simien is still praying for the best.

"We've got to live and with the help of God, everything is going to be okay. We've just got to keep praying and asking God to give us the strength," said Simien.

That resiliency is once again being tested in Lake Charles. The system in the Gulf, whether it impacts the city or not, is a reminder that hurricane season is indeed here.

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