LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - As Tropical Storm Barry continues to approach Louisiana, many locals are doing everything they can to prepare for any potential flooding, including stocking up on sandbags.
For a full list of sandbags in the five parish area, go here.
Twelve-year-old Davin Stevens may not have a home of his own to protect yet, but that didn’t stop him from spending his day filling sandbags for others.
“I like doing the work, and I like helping people," Stevens said.
One of those people was Vanessa Rigmaiden. She was filling sandbags to protect both her and her daughter’s homes, along with her business.
“I should have before, and I didn’t," Rigmaiden said. "So this time, I’m going to be smart.”
If you’re like Rigmaiden and you’re trying to protect yourself against potential flood waters, here are a few tips for you:
- To fill sandbags, it’s best to have two people; one to hold the bag, and one to scoop the sand
- You can also create a makeshift funnel for quicker and more efficient filling
- The bags should each be filled two-thirds of the way
- Once you get them home, lay the bags at any entryways where water could get in, like doors or garages
- Place them so they’re overlapping, making sure the unfilled top part of the bag is covered by the next bag
- You typically only need to place two or three layers
- Bags should be untied when you’re laying them down
If you’re thinking about getting sandbags but haven’t made the call yet, Rigmaiden said it’s better to be safe than sorry.
“If it’s gonna stop the littlest something from happening to your home or your business, then I say come out here and do it,” Rigmaiden said.
Even if you’re not in need of them, you can always take a page from Stevens’ book, and go out to lend a helping hand.
Here are some more tips for best sandbag practices:
- Place down a layer of plastic sheeting to act as the water proofing membrane
- Lay sandbags like brickwork on top of the plastic sheeting
- Start at one end and work to the other end
- Ensure the unfilled top part of the bag is covered by the next bag
- Tuck flap under the bag at the end of the row
- Stagger rows so that the joins do not line up