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Thomas: Parish ‘dodged bullet’ from storm

This article was written by Parish President Richard “Ned” Thomas.

We are very fortunate that Washington Parish “dodged the bullet” once again.

Tropical Storm Cristobal produced rain and wind, but not what was originally forecast for Washington Parish. I declared a State of Emergency, at which time the Washington Parish EOC was activated on June 5 and throughout the duration, monitoring TS Cristobal closely.

Information received from homeland security director Bobbi Jo Breland indicates Washington Parish received about three inches of rain, very few power outages and no damage to report. Our local rivers are still forecasted to rise, but we do not expect any major impacts from these rises. As of 8 a.m. Monday, the Bogue Chitto at Franklinton was at 2.5 feet. The river is expected to rise to a crest of 9.0 feet early Wednesday morning. The Pearl River was at 11.0 feet. The river is expected to rise above flood stage Wednesday morning to a crest of 14.0 feet tomorrow evening. It will then fall below flood stage late Thursday evening.

Our public work crews were prepared; though it turned out to be a trial run, as the wind and rain can do. Five trees were reported down on roadways in the parish and our crews were able to remove them in a timely manner, keeping the citizens of Washington Parish safe.

While the forecast from the National Weather Service and the national hurricane center indicated greater impacts for our area, I am thankful that they were minimal. However, I urge every citizen to remain vigilant and not let your guard down as this hurricane season is forecasted to be 60 percent above normal.