Disaster relief crews making final preps before Hurricane Laura landfall

Updated: Aug. 26, 2020 at 6:24 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Crews around Louisiana are preparing for Hurricane Laura. Right now, disaster relief crews are finalizing their plans.

As Hurricane Laura approaches Louisiana, disaster relief programs are gearing up. Power outages could likely herald Hurricane Laura’s arrival and linger after the storm moves out of Louisiana. Before that happens, Entergy crews are staging in Baton Rouge. Their trucks and workers are set up and ready to spring into action when called.

“Now, the company has secured 9,000 workers to come in to help with this. Close to 6,000 of those workers are going to be in Louisiana. That includes line workers, folks in bucket trucks, that kind of thing, and vegetation contractors are going to be very important with a lot of tree damage. We also have folks coming in to help us assess the damage so we can know where to attack the outage,” said Phillip May, president and CEO of Entergy Louisiana.

If there’s a power outage in the area, the best thing for homeowners to do is to report it since crews can’t work until conditions are safe. It may take a while for crews to get power restored, so be prepared.

Meanwhile, the Louisiana Office of State Fire Marshal (LAOSFM) is also preparing its teams to help with search and rescue efforts wherever they’re needed in the storm’s wake.

”In my career, this will probably be the largest urban search and rescue event that we will do in Louisiana as it relates to damage. When you hear these projected winds of 140 gusts, this Category 4, potentially Category 5... that’s catastrophic damage to buildings,” said State Fire Marshal Butch Browning.

Most likely, crews and volunteers won’t be able to get into any damaged areas until after the storm. Volunteer Louisiana is currently trying to ready volunteers to assist in the aftermath.

“After the event, there will be opportunities for volunteering. We know that there is going to be a need for mass feeding after this event, we know there is going to be a need for mucking and gutting homes, and for rebuilding communities,” said Judd Jeansonne, executive director of Volunteer Louisiana.

RELATED>>> Community Foundation of SWLA activates relief fund for Hurricane Laura victims

Right now, Volunteer Louisiana is asking for financial donations to help those after the storm. If you would like to help out areas in Louisiana that are being affected by the storm, you can go to Volunteer Louisiana’s website.

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