On December 27th and 28th, a squall line blew across the region leaving a fatality and pockets of flooding and wind damage in its wake. Areas along the north shore in Washington and Tangipahoa parishes saw upwards of 12 inches of rain in just a few hours. Low lying areas of St Charles and East Baton Rouge parishes also saw flooding from the system.
One of the hardest hit areas was Angie, LA in the extreme northeast portion of Washington parish. Dozens of homes along Pushepatapa Creek took in 3-4 feet of water as the creek quickly filled and spilled over its banks. Residents described hearing local police and fire officials driving through neighborhoods alerting residents over the loudspeaker of the incoming water.
For most residents, this was a hard blow to their recovery efforts. "We had just finished cleaning up and rebuilding from a flood in March of 2016," said Patricia Hooks. Hooks went on to explain that her home had around 3 feet of water in it this time around, but back in March it was a couple feet shy of the roofline. Over the last 60 years, residents have experienced flooding more than half a dozen times.
Teams of volunteers spent much of the weekend out in the field completing damage assessment, distributing clean-up kits, and starting the process of casework and resource distribution. On Sunday afternoon, the team of volunteers Cora Lee and Carolyn Adams drove an Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV) around Washington parish distributing sandwiches to impacted residents as they continued the slow process of removing drywall, ripping out carpeting, and trying to salvage what they could from their ruined Christmas gifts and decorations.
For information on what to do before, during, and after a flood, click here.
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The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.