As week begins, Isaac prep is under way

Published 10:36 pm Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Supplies of water and gasoline were already in short supply Monday morning, and Bogalusa residents were on the move in advance of Tropical Storm Isaac.

The lines for gas at the Stop and Shop in Pine Tree Plaza were backed up with people filling their vehicles and gas cans. Proprietor Jamal el Haleyih said there were “25 cars lined up before I opened.”

Larry Dupre stood with a nozzle in a gas can and said he’d tried a couple of stations on Louisiana Highway 21 and the Junior Food Mart in Bogalusa and found them “out of gas.”

Justin Cooper was doing the same. He said he was getting fuel for his generator. Cooper said he’d been in Bogalusa for Hurricane Katrina and that he planned to ride out Isaac at home with his generator at-the-ready.

Further back in line, Ken Burton said he was preparing, but not too worried.

“At this point, it’s still considered a tropical storm,” he said. “It’s not going to get anywhere near Katrina. I’m not worried, I’m preparing.”

Tene Jenkins took advantage of her turn at the pump to also load up on ice. Across the parking lot, the water shelves at Winn Dixie were cleared of all the big jugs of water and some smaller packages.

At the self checkout, Courtney and Robert Hartmen and their infant daughter, Acadia, had a basket full of non-perishable foods.

“We’re just making sure,” Courtney Hartman said.

Meanwhile, Mayor Charles Mizell was out checking tree limbs throughout the city and directing overall storm prep.

“There’s been a lot of tree trimming, and our crews are removing everything from the sides of the road,” he said. “We’re removing all the debris we can find.”

Flooding is a concern, but Mizell said the recent removal of layers of asphalt that blocked many storm drains should help.

“I think our drainage is in really good shape,” he said. “We’ve opened a lot, and should have good drainage with some of the road work we’ve done.

“We’re also clearing catch basins of all debris, and we ask citizens to also participate in this and to clear catch basins and ditches near their homes and on their personal properties.”

Mizell stressed “personal responsibility.”

“Even with diminished winds we don’t know…,” he said. “We’re still in the cone and it’s moving so slow and not yet organized.

“Everybody needs to get their prescriptions and medical supplies. Be prepared to be self-sufficient for a week. We don’t know what will happen with the power grids. Take personal responsibility. Check everything.”