USA – Rising Rivers Prompt Louisiana to Declare State of Emergency

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has declared a state of emergency in several parishes across the state as a result of severe weather and flooding.

Louisiana joins the states of Kentucky, Indiana, Missouri and Michigan in declaring an emergency in response to a wave of flooding areas across central and southern USA that has left 6 people dead.

The Louisiana emergency declaration is for Avoyelles, Beauregard, Bossier, Caddo, Grant, Morehouse, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Rapides Parishes as concerns grow regarding river flooding.

The Calcasieu River near Glenmora is at 15.95 feet but is expected to rise to over 18 feet (major flood stage) over the coming days.

As of 27 February the Red River at Grand Ecore stood at 34.28 feet and was expected to rise to over 39 feet later this week.

Red River at Grand Ecore Louisiana. Image: NWS / NOAA

“We typically see these types of river issues develop during this time of year,” said Gov. Edwards.

“Recent heavy rains in Louisiana and other parts of the country with rivers that impact Louisiana has increased the urgency to prepare for this emergency. Many parishes in north Louisiana are taking action now. We urge the public to do the same if you live or work in an area where river flooding is a concern. Heavy rain and possible severe weather are possible again this week.”

The rising water is due to the flooding of the Red River Valley. Residents are encouraged to monitor information and resources provided by GOHSEP, local emergency managers, the National Weather Service (NWS) and local media to track possible flooding or severe weather.

Residents are urged to avoid flooded roadways and not remove or drive around flood barricades.

The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry advises farmers to start taking the necessary precautions now to protect their livestock and equipment.