LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - The latest on Hurricane Laura in SWLA.
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8:00 p.m. 101,897 Louisiana residents reported to be without power.
6:20 p.m. Crews bring fire to smolder at BioLab, precautionary shelter in place remains in effect.
5:20 p.m. FEMA working to mobilize teams and supplies.
5 p.m. Interview with FEMA Communications Director Marty Bahamonde
3:10 p.m. Damage to McNeese Football Stadium and Baseball Field
3:00 p.m. Due to the severe weather impacts associated with Hurricane Laura, Waste Management has canceled all residential commercial collection services today through the remainder of this week, in parishes across Southwest Louisiana. Waste Management is currently assessing damage and accessibility in order to determine the resumption of service schedules. These notices of suspended service include all residential and commercial customers serviced by Waste Management in the following parishes:
- Calcasieu Parish
- Cameron Parish
- Jefferson Davis Parish
- Beauregard Parish
- Allen Parish
2:25 p.m. The Chennault water plant in Lake Charles was destroyed by Laura, according to Mayor Nic Hunter. This places a severe tax on our water supply in the area. As a result, officials are asking residents not to return to Lake Charles if at all possible for the time being.
Once roads are made safe officials say it will be fine for residents to drive in and survey the damage to their homes and businesses but that they should not stay until the water situation can be resolved.
1:10 p.m. Calcasieu Parish Police Jury President, Tony Guillory, gives his thoughts on Hurricane Laura’s impact on Lake Charles.
1:00 p.m. Vernon Parish residents are lined up to get back to their homes.
12:40 p.m. According to the Calcasieu Parish School Board, many schools across the parish have been damaged by the storm. They are still in the early stages of assessing all of the damage.
Once the School Board can determine the degree of the damages they will decide on their next steps. They plan to release some information for families this weekend.
12:20 p.m. Damage in Leesville
12:10 p.m. Most SWLA residents are without power as crews continue to assess the damage.
These are the estimated power outages for the following parishes:
Calcasieu - 102,867
Cameron - 1,972
Allen - 11,475
Jeff Davis - 11,032
Beauregard - 19,618
Vernon - 14,702
Total SWLA - 161,666
12:00 p.m. Hurricane Laura has now been downgraded to a tropical storm as it works its way inland.
11:50 a.m. The Westlake chemical fire has been confirmed to be from BioLab. The gas that is leaking from the lab is a type of chlorine.
Officials say that residents in Moss Bluff, Westlake, and Sulphur should shelter in place. If you have a strong chlorine smell in your home then officials say you may want to consider evacuating to a safer area.
If you have significant damage to your home then it is not safe to take shelter in and you need to evacuate the area. If you are in a car or in your home in that area, do not run an air-conditioner.
11:40 a.m. Damage in Westlake
11:15 a.m. More damage from Lake Charles and across SWLA.
11:00 a.m. The South’s Defenders monument at Lake Charles city hall was knocked down during the storm.
10:28 a.m. Sulphur and Westlake have issued a shelter in place for the city due to the chemical fire in Westlake.
10:00 a.m. State Police are investigating reports of a possible chemical fire at one of the plants in Westlake. I-10 has been blocked off near the facility around mile marker 26.
9:17 a.m. Hurricane Laura downgraded to a Catagory 1 storm as it works its way inland.
9:15 a.m. More damage from across SWLA.
9:00 a.m. Another view of Lake Charles’s damage.
8:50 a.m. Lake Charles Mayor Nic Hunter says there have been no reports of deaths as a result of the storm in Lake Charles. He says while there seems to be less water damage than hurricane Rita had the wind damage is much worse.
Mayor Hunter advises residents who evacuated to stay out of the city for now until emergency crews can make the city safe to travel through. Wind damage has downed many of the power lines and created a large amount of debris.
8:45 a.m. View of damage to the Sulphur area.
8:35 a.m. Emergency crews are currently clearing paths along roads so that emergency vehicles can move through.
Authorities ask residents to stay off the roads and ask those that evacuated not to return at this time so that the area can be made safe.
8:20 a.m. Governor John Edwards confirms the first death in Louisiana as a result of Hurricane Laura. A 14-year-old girl was killed when a tree collapsed on her home. The location is currently unknown. More reports of deaths as a result of the storm are expected.
7:50 a.m. Downtown Lake Charles Damage
7:35 a.m. KPLC’s fallen tower
7:25 a.m. Damage in Lake Charles
7:20 a.m. Damage in Sulphur
7:15 a.m. Damage in Lake Charles
7:00 a.m. Daylight in Crowley
6:15 a.m. Dick Gremillion with Calcasieu OHSEP says authorities will begin surveying damage in the next couple hours once damage dies down.
Authorities ask residents that rode out the storm to stay home so that streets are clear for emergency crews and to text instead of call because towers may be damaged limiting service.
If residents have an emergency they should call 911. Emergency crews will respond once they are able to get back on the roads.
5:00 a.m. More damage from across SWLA
4:00 a.m. Windows blown out at Capitol One building downtown.
3 a.m. Top blows off of St. Pat’s skybridge.
2:45 p.m. Sulphur Police Chief Lewis Coats says lots of trees down that he can say. Says he rode Rita out in the same building. “That was a cakewalk compared to this.”
2:40 a.m. Vinton Mayor Kenny Stinson is at Vinton City Hall. He says they are seeing the worst of it. Trim coming off City Hall.
2:30 a.m. Some views of Hurricane Laura as it moves through Lake Charles.
1:45 p.m. At least 115,000 without power in Southwest Louisiana.
1 a.m. Laura makes landfall near Cameron as extremely dangerous Category 4 hurricane. https://www.kplctv.com/2020/08/26/hurricane-laura-expected-become-devastating-category-storm/
Powerful winds begin to do damage across SWLA.
12:20 p.m. If you stayed, get to your safe place! Stay away from windows and doors!
Midnight update: FROM National Hurricane Center: Northern eyewall of Laura moving over Cameron Parish. Catastrophic storm surge, extreme winds and flash flooding occurring in SWLA.
11:45 p.m. Thousands now without power in SWLA.
11:00 p.m. Update from the National Hurricane Center.
11:30 p.m. Conditions beginning to worsen in Lake Charles. Stay put and stay safe if you stayed!
10:45 p.m. More than 6,000 without power in Calcasieu.
10:40 p.m. From Jillian Corder: Just a few minutes after our interview with Sheriff Tony Mancuso, the rain and wind started to really pick up.The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office has closed all the storm shutters and only one door remains accessible. Soon all the storm doors will be closed. There are dozens of deputies here tonight. We’ve all been given life jackets should conditions warrant us leaving at any point.
10:30 p.m. Latest update shows Hurricane Laura a high-end Category 4; 75 miles from Lake Charles
FROM CAMERON PARISH:
75 miles from Port Arthur, TX and Lake Charles.
The eyewall will be making landfall between midnight and 2 am. East of the center of circulation will see the highest storm surge and strongest winds.Expect to see winds of 120+ mph near Lake Charles as the eyewall moves through the area.
Winds of 75 to 100+ mph are expected in southeast Texas. Winds of 50 to 75 mph are expected in south central Louisiana.
Storm surge in Lake Charles will be delayed until closer to sunrise. The combination of surge and rainfall will likely cause catastrophic flooding in this region.
If southeast Texas can stay west of the center of circulation, storm surge will be delayed until closer to sunrise as well. The storm surge will be in the 5 to 8 ft range in southeast Texas.
Storm surge in Vermilion Bay region has the potential to be in the 10 to 15 ft range
10:20 p.m. Tornado warnings keep coming.
10 p.m. Latest update on Laura shows the hurricane right on the coast of Cameron.
9:50 p.m. 1,100 Entergy customers without power in Calcasieu.
9:40 p.m. I-10 closed in both directions.
9:23 p.m. Tornado Warning including Cameron Parish, LA, Vermilion Parish, LA until 9:45 p.m.
9:15 p.m. All of SWLA under Tornado Watch. A watch means conditions are favorable for a tornado. A warning means what appears to be a tornado has been spotted.
9 p.m. Tornado Warning including Cameron Parish, LA, Vermilion Parish, LA until 9:15 p.m.
8:55 p.m. Update in DeRidder
Pinewood Elementary School Shelter is at full capacity with 75 people and is being closed. Anyone still seeking shelter should go to First Pentecostal Church at 120 Mahlon St in DeRidder and that shelter is getting close to capacity and within the hour both will be locked down.
8:29 p.m. I-10 westbound shut down from Texas state line to Atchafalaya Bridge
8:25 p.m. We are about six hours from landfall.
8:20 p.m. From Cameron Parish OEP
The eye of category 4 Hurricane Laura is 95 miles from Lake Charles and 95 miles from Port Arthur. It is moving north-northwest at 15 mph. Maximum winds are 150 mph, just below category 5 strength.Tropical storm force winds are now approaching the I-10 corridor in Louisiana. Hurricane force winds will begin near the coast in the next 2 to 4 hours.One large rain band is moving into the I-10 corridor now, and very heavy rain will be moving onshore over the next several hours.
8 p.m. The latest in Lake Charles.
· Calcasieu has issued a mandatory evacuation.
· Cameron has issued a mandatory evacuation.
· Allen Parish has issued a voluntary evacuation.
· Beauregard Parish has issued a voluntary evacuation.
· Jeff Davis has issued a voluntary evacuation.
Calcasieu Parish: Beginning Wednesday, 7 p.m. until 6 a.m.
Beauregard Parish: Dusk till dawn curfew in effect
Jeff Davis Parish: Beginning Thursday, Sunset to sunrise.
Merryville: Beginning Wednesday, 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Vernon Parish: All of Vernon Parish from 10 p.m. until the Chief and Sheriff advise it is safe to travel.