While the floodwaters of Hurricane Isaac have all but receded in most affected areas of Louisiana, efforts continue for recovery from the prolonged, heavy rainfall, severe flooding, and high damaging winds. Shelter operations, power restoration, and flood-fighting remain in some areas while other areas are improving and allowing residents to return home.
On September 4th, the Louisiana Public Service Commissioner reported that 25,413 customers were still without power. Those without power are contending with a new complication – trying to rebuild their lives amid blistering temperatures and no air conditioning. The dangers of heatstroke and heat exhaustion join the list of worries and setbacks.
Throughout the state, at least 13,000 homes were damaged, according to a spokeswoman for the Louisiana Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. That figure is a preliminary estimate, and officials expect the number to rise as they gain access to some of the hardest-hit areas. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved supplemental funding for debris removal from private property in especially hard-hit Plaquemines Parish. Seven FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC) remain open.
The presidential disaster declaration issued on August 26th for Hurricane Isaac made federal assistance available to eligible survivors in 10 parishes: Ascension, Jefferson, Lafourche, Livingston, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. John and St. Tammany. On the positive side, the Corps of Engineers was roundly praised for the performance of its $14 billion in levee improvements around New Orleans.