Residents say debris from Hurricane Delta lingers a month after landfall

Updated: Nov. 11, 2020 at 4:40 PM CST
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - 9News has received dozens of calls and emails from residents in East Baton Rouge Parish about debris from Hurricane Delta not being picked up, blocking streets, and killing grass on lawns.

WAFB’s Donovan Jackson has been working to get some updates on cleanup efforts in the parish.

Residents near St. Michael High School say they have hurricane debris that has been in their yards for over a month now.

“We should be able to live comfortably in our homes and not have to have an eyesore like this and this is not the homeowner’s problem or faults. This is part of the storm,” said Dale Soileau.

Soileau says it has also become a safety concern for him and his neighbors that live on Coffee Road in Baton Rouge.

“There are kids growing up right there and they might dart out and not be seen because of all the debris,” he said.

Soileau says they’ve reached out to the city-parish several times since the storm, but says they have not received the answer they’re looking for.

'"We just haven’t gotten there yet.’ That’s not a good answer. That’s a put off. It’s very frustrating. That’s what led to me telling them that I was going to put this in their yard,” said Soileau.

WAFB’s Donovan Jackson reached out to the mayor’s office to find out how far along they are with debris cleanup.

“The crews have been out now for a number of weeks; we think we probably have another 14 days before the debris is fully picked up,” said Daryl Gissel, chief administrative officer for the mayor’s office.

Gissel says the city contracted DRC Emergency services to clean up the parish after Hurricane Delta. The company assessed areas with heavy damage first and is working its way to less impacted areas.

“The faster the contractor gets everything picked up, the faster he gets fully paid, so he has every reason to do this as quickly and judicially as possible,” said Gissel.

Gissel says they are also competing with other cities affected by hurricanes for the use of trucks; they’re asking folks to be patient. Those seeking to get more updates on debris collection in their neighborhood can call the city-parish at 311.

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