Voting machines roll out to polling locations - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Voting machines roll out to polling locations

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BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -

Off Florida Boulevard, there is an inconspicuous green warehouse. The building is worn and most people driving by have never noticed it. Inside, it's a curious sight. Lines of blockish machines stretch from one end of the warehouse to the other.

Staff members move between and around lines, checking and rechecking the machines as various beeps and buzzes go off.

These are some of the 12,000 voting machines statewide, a key piece of the election process. Before they can record any votes, they must go through a tedious preparation.

"What we're doing now is testing and sealing machines to ascertain that machine is at zero. We calibrate that back and then they're sealed," explained Secretary of State Tom Schedler.

Once signed and sealed, the machines are delivered while kept under close watch. They are only unsealed by the precinct commissioner just before the polls open. A similar sealing process will be repeated the moment polls close.

Each precinct will have back up machines and paper ballots if something goes wrong.

Staff members will work long hours election week setting up the machines and polling sites, but the job doesn't end when the polls close.

"We certify their vote 10 days later. We don't stop. We only have to then get prepared in some areas for the December 6th election for run offs," said Schedler.

However, this is one case in which the staff is pleased to be busy. 

"It was nice to see that people are engaged and interested in Louisiana in doing their freedom that men and women have fought for a long time to give us, and a lot of times I think we take that too much for granted," said Schedler.

Polling sites open at 6am on Tuesday, and close at 8 p.m. For more information on voter day information, click here.

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