A state of emergency was declared in Louisiana Wednesday in response to severe flooding. Mandatory evacuations were ordered in several communities in south and east Louisiana as Tropical Storm Barry formed over the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday morning. State officials have recommended stocking up on food and sheltering in place and moving to higher ground when necessary.
More than eight inches of rain has fallen in Jefferson Parish in New Orleans, according to Accuweather.com. The National Hurricane Center issued an advisory saying to expect “storm surge, heavy rains and flooding, as well as hurricane conditions… during the next couple of days.”
Residents throughout the region are questioning if the levees will hold. The central United States has already seen a historic spring flood season, with the Mississippi River in Baton Rouge being at flood stage for more than the past six months, breaking a previous record. The Washington Post reports that the Mississippi River is “16 feet high already, just a foot below flood stage.” New Orleans Fox 8 Chief Meteorologist David Bernard tweeted, “The Mississippi River is now forecast to crest near 20 feet on Saturday. Average levee height for New Orleans is 20 feet.”
When a disaster is about to strike, Team Rubicon is at the ready, preparing a response. Zachary Brooks-Miller, TR’s Director of Field Operations, said, “Team Rubicon is monitoring the path of the storm and identifying likely impacted areas. We are mobilizing resources and pre-staging asset in preparation for a response to assist vulnerable communities.”
Greyshirts are skilled in mitigation and recovery operations, damage assessment, sawyering, disaster clean up and medical mobile operations. Team Rubicon has more than 11,800 Greyshirts standing by in Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, according to Dana Braverman, TR’s Manager of Marketing Analytics and Insights.