Fire decimates pumping capacity for East Bank of Orleans Parish
Posted August 11
NEW ORLEANS, LA — Residents on the East Bank of Orleans Parish are advised to be on high alert after a fire greatly diminished the city's capacity to drain storm water from the streets.
The fire broke out around 8 p.m. on August 9 at a pumping station on Claiborne Avenue, crippling a power turbine that provides power to a majority of the city's pumping stations on the East Bank.
As a result, all areas west of the Industrial Canal in Orleans Parish are extremely susceptible to flooding, and the Sewerage and Water Board will not be able to drain flooded streets effectively until full power is restored to the system.
The only areas of Orleans Parish that are not affected by this outage are New Orleans East, the Lower Ninth Ward, and Algiers.
The National Weather Service predicts rain in the area today, causing city officials to send out multiple emergency warnings overnight.
In a press release sent out just before 2 a.m. on August 10, city officials said they are "urging residents in the affected area to move their vehicles to higher ground, take necessary actions to protect personal property, and stay off of roadways during rainstorms unless an emergency makes it absolutely necessary to do so."
Crews are working to repair the turbine and secure backup power, but until that work is complete, the city is urging residents in the affected areas to move their vehicles to higher ground and stay off roadways during rainfall.
Mayor Landrieu will hold a 6 a.m. press conference that will be streamed live on WGNO.com and on our Facebook page.
Stay tuned to WGNO for more information as this story develops.