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Governor declares ‘state of emergency’ in advance of Cristobal

On Thursday, Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency in advance of Tropical Depression Cristobal, which is currently forecast to strengthen in the Gulf of Mexico to become a Tropical Storm that will potentially make landfall in Louisiana this weekend.

“While it is still too early to know for sure what impact Cristobal could have on Louisiana, now is the time to make your plans, which should include the traditional emergency items along with masks and hand sanitizer as we continue to battle the coronavirus pandemic,” Edwards said. “A flash flood watch has already been issued for a large part of the state, and heavy rain is expected. It is critically important for the people of Louisiana to be aware of this tropical threat. Our state, local and federal partners have spent the past several days working with local governments and emergency officials preparing for issues related to this and the ongoing COVID-19 emergency. They are ready to respond as needed.”

The governor was scheduled to hold a Unified Command Group briefing on Tropical Depression Cristobal and COVID-19 Friday morning, followed by a 2:30 p.m. press conference at the State Capitol. The governor’s press conferences can be streamed at gov.louisiana.gov.

Members of the public should monitor the news for weather updates and follow guidance from local officials about storm issues in the coming days. The governor’s office will also share updates about severe weather and also COVID-19 through its texting system. People may opt-in by texting LACOVID to 67283 and sign up for phone calls by going to Smart911. For information on road closures, please visit 511la.org.

A list of tropical weather supplies, evacuation information and other critical information can be found on the www.getagameplan.org website. No evacuations have currently been issued for Cristobal.

Here are some examples of what you and your family may need in the event you must evacuate or shelter in place:

  • A three to five- day supply of water (one gallon per person per day) and food that won’t spoil.
  • A supply of face coverings, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes due to COVID19 concerns.
  • One change of clothing and footwear per person, and one blanket or sleeping bag per person.
  • A first aid kit that includes your family’s prescription medications.
  • Emergency tools including a battery-powered radio, flashlight and plenty of extra batteries.
  • An extra set of car keys and a credit card, cash or traveler’s checks.
  • Sanitation supplies.
  • Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members.
  • An extra pair of glasses.
  • Important family documents in a portable, waterproof container.
  • Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils, paper towels.
  • Paper and pencil.
  • Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children.
  • Infant formula and diapers.
  • Pet food and extra water.