BATON ROUGE, La. (KLFY) — As many as four people may have been killed by severe weather and flooding Monday and Tuesday, according to Gov. John Bel Edwards in a press conference this afternoon.
The deaths are all under investigation, he said. The only death with a coroner’s report is one involving a 33-year-old man found dead in a flooded car on Bluebonnet Blvd. in Baton Rouge.
In West Baton Rouge Parish, one person was found dead in a submerged vehicle. Another person was found injured and another is missing in the same incident. Two more deaths may be linked to power outages from the storm, said Edwards.
Several search and rescue operations have been underway over the past two days, said Edwards, especially in the Lake Charles area, where Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries agents rescued 110 people and 15 pets; Louisiana State Fire Marshal personnel rescued 78 people and five pets; and Louisiana National Guard personnel rescued 19 people and two pets. Edwards said more local rescues have also been underway, though he only had numbers from statewide offices to share.
Edwards said there are no statewide shelters set up, though a small population were being housed in shelters in Lake Charles and Baton Rouge.
Lake Charles took on 15 inches of rain in under 10 hours, leading to historic flooding in a city still recovering from twin hurricanes in 2020. Edwards said parts of the city took damage even in places that were spared in hurricanes Laura and Delta. Around 13 inches of rain was reported in Baton Rouge, he said.
As of noon today, the Public Service Commission reported over 10,430 power outages statewide, down from a high of 25,000 at 6 a.m. this morning.
With grounds saturated and local rivers and creeks still somewhat swollen from Monday’s rains, it won’t take much new rain to trigger flash floods around the state, he said. Rains are expected to continue off and on through Thursday.