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Cajun Navy factions say they’re heading to Grand Isle after Hurricane Zeta lashes area

Updated: Oct. 28, 2020 at 5:38 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Zeta made landfall as a strong category two hurricane around 4 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 28 near Cocodrie, La.

It’s the latest storm that has rammed into the state’s coastline, leaving a path of power outages and destruction.

Ahead of the storm making landfall, members of the state’s numerous Cajun Navy factions spent Wednesday making final preparations to assist residents impacted by Zeta.

“There probably won’t be a whole lot of real bad flooding but what’s going to happen, the winds this thing is going to be packing it’s going to put down a lot of trees and power lines and such,” said John Bridgers with the Cajun Navy 2016.

Many of these volunteer organizations started in 2016 to assist with search and rescue during the flood. Over time, several groups have become more organized and regularly travel to areas affected by storms to assist with cleanup, search and rescue operations, and humanitarian efforts.

“Every storm is different,” said Todd Terrell of the United Cajun Navy. “Not every storm needs a boat, but every storm, people need help. They need water and snacks and different things.”

Those efforts have been stretched thin during 2020. Terrell’s United Cajun Navy and Bridger’s Cajun Navy 2016 have been busy delivering food and supplies to the Lake Charles area after Laura wrecked southwest Louisiana.

“It’s almost become a full-time gig for us,” Terrell said. “We never thought we’d have four storms this year, preparing for seven. The need is there, the need is great.”

While the resources are sparse, the factions are prepared to go into the affected areas of the storm as soon as it is safe to make sure no one is left behind.

The groups plan to travel to Grand Isle Thursday, Oct. 28 to help residents there. Organizers say they will have an escort and that Grand Isle is a “mess.”

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