Pat Brister, St. Tammany Parish President, Announces Debris Pick-Up Schedule and Signed Emergency Declaration as Part of Olga Disaster Response
Pat Brister, St. Tammany Parish President, announced that Parish Government has started vegetative, non-construction debris pickup in unincorporated areas, as well as signed an Emergency Declaration as part of the response to the ongoing impacts of Tropical Storm Olga.
“Parish Government has worked all weekend to maintain our water systems infrastructure in affected areas, remove debris blocking roads, and inform residents of the headway the power companies are making to restore electricity in the wake of this powerful storm,” said Pat Brister St. Tammany Parish President. “Property damage and power loss in St. Tammany has been widespread, resulting from the unpredicted severity of the high winds that caused a massive number of fallen trees, limbs and branches.”
Parish President Brister ordered crews to begin debris pickups this morning, and they will continue through tomorrow evening. A follow-up round of pick-ups will happen later this week. These crews will only remove vegetative, non-construction debris, where the debris is placed in the right-of-way, as Parish workers cannot enter private property to accomplish this task.
Parish Government has had Public Works and Tammany Utilities crews working in the field since before daybreak Saturday morning. These crews were placed on standby Friday afternoon as a precaution, and as part of Parish Government’s Emergency Operations Plan. Tammany Utilities’ water system operations remained uninterrupted due to the diligence of crews who were dispatched as the storm subsided. These crews brought generator power to 15 wells in our system with electricity losses in order to maintain water pressure. As a result of this action, enough pressure was maintained throughout the systems so that no boil advisories were issued by Tammany Utilities. In addition, 35 lift stations went down, however, crews were able to deliver generator power, or manually service the stations to keep all 35 up and running.
Public Works crews were dispatched Saturday morning to perform damage assessments and begin removing trees and debris from Parish roadways. Our crews worked in conjunction with first responders and the power companies to make these roads passable for power company repair crews and the public. Public Works also assisted the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development with tree removal on State Highways. Crews have begun today removing the debris from the sides of the road and from residences, and will continue to remove downed trees once they are freed from power lines by the utility companies. The Public Works crews also assisted law enforcement and public safety agencies by placing stop signs at busy intersections where the traffic signals were not operating.
Parish President Brister continues to monitor and stay on top of utility companies still working to restore power to affected customers. These utility companies are providing updates to Parish Public Works crews to update their progress on removing power lines tangled in fallen trees, so that Public Works may remove debris as soon as it is safe.