Gov. Edwards on Harvey: 'The worst has yet to come for Louisiana'

Edwards: 'The worst has yet to come for Louisiana'

NEW ORLEANS - Governor John Bel Edwards, D-Louisiana, expects Harvey to officially cross over into Louisiana, somewhere between Toledo Bend and Shreveport. However, impacts from the storm are being felt all along the Gulf Coast from Cameron to New Orleans.

"In all likelihood, the worst has yet to come for us in Louisiana," Edwards said. "It's actually moving toward the east in our direction and that makes this, obviously a dangerous situation for our state."

The state has activated the National Guard, with citizen soldiers now responding to flooding in southwest Louisiana.

"As we speak, we have about 100 on active duty," Gen. Curtis said.

"The governor has given us authority today to go up to 350 and then based on the threat of the storm, we will increase, provide recommendations on how we should increase or we should stage them at."

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries teams, including 40 agents are already involved in search and rescue missions in the Houston area where thousands of people are stranded in high water.

"There was one team of 10 that was actually there yesterday and they partnered up with their counterparts in Texas and affected 700 rescues yesterday," Gov. Edwards said.

Dozens of volunteers, many of them with boats, gathered outside a Baton Rouge grocery storm on Monday, to take on supplies, mount up and move out. The so called Cajun Navy 2016, will be participating in rescue efforts in Texas, where thousands of people are stranded in high water.

"We kind of waited this morning to let the water settle down before we got over there, so we’re about to leave now and we’re going to see how that goes and send another crew first thing in the morning," said Cajun Navy 2016 organizer Todd Terrell. "We're there to help and get as many people out as we can."

For some volunteers, it was about paying it forward for help they received during last year's floods in Louisiana.

"It's unbelievable," said Hunter Luke from St. Amant. "We just went through it last year and now they going through it. They helped us. We need to help them."

The governor is asking residents to stay prepared as the storm moves east over the next couple of days.

"We believe going forward, this will remain primarily a rain event, not a wind event from the storm, but there are a number of tornados that are developing as it relates to this storm as well, so please take those tornado watches and warning very seriously," Gov. Edwards said.

So far, five parishes in southwest Louisiana are under an emergency declaration. The declarations, signed by President Donald Trump calls for the federal government to reimburse local governments for 75 percent of their storm related expenses.

© 2017 WWL-TV


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