Governor Edwards gives updates on Tropical Storm Cindy
BATON ROUGE, La - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards declared a statewide state of emergency Wednesday morning, in response to Tropical Storm Cindy.
The proclamation came after several parishes declared a state of emergency. Numerous other parishes were expected to make a declaration as well, according to the proclamation from the Governor.
In a press release issued Wednesday morning, the Governor said "all arms of the state's emergency preparedness and response apparatus are taking Tropical Storm Cindy seriously. We are calling on all Louisianans throughout the state to do so as well."
"Please do all you can to prepare for the worst while praying for the best," he added.
The state of emergency declaration takes effect June 21, and will last until July 21. To read the full text of the declaration click here.
The Governor and state officials held a press conference on Wednesday at noon to discuss the latest information related to Tropical Storm Cindy.
Edwards said that 20 parishes declared a state of emergency and six more are preparing to do the same, as of Wednesday.
The governor mentioned that in 2016 there were two major weather events that impacted the state and said Tropical Storm Cindy is something the state is taking seriously.
"We certainly can not afford to take it lightly," Edwards said.
Edwards said the storm system will affect the entire state. Edwards reminded residents to be prepared for heavy rain and high water, along with strong winds.
Edwards urged residents to be careful while driving and stressed the importance of avoiding high water.
"Last year most of the injuries and deaths occurred when folks tried to drive across high water," Edwards said. "It's not worth it, don't take a chance."
DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson said that the agency has several high water signs deployed in areas where they are expecting it. He reminded drivers to be aware of signs and updates on road closures. Wilson noted that it only takes about two or three inches of water to move a vehicle and drivers should be cautious of standing water.
Wilson advised for drivers to stay updated on road closures at 511.la.org.
Edwards stated that no evacuations have been called for, both voluntary or mandatory. He said that there may be a possibility of evacuations called for on a local level and that residents should listen and take the call seriously if that occurs.
The governor stated that he has not received any reports of damaged homes or businesses as of Wednesday afternoon. Additionally, he stated that no shelters have been open, however state officials are preparing for shelters to open if needed.
Edwards said that the weather service officials anticipate the storm to make landfall at 1 a.m. on Thursday in southwest Louisiana. He said he anticipates heavy rainfall in the area.
"It's areas west of the Achtafalaya River we are expecting the worst in terms of the total amount of rainfall," Edwards said.
Edwards advised for residents to check emergency.la.gov for updates and the latest information.