How Prepared Is Shreveport-Bossier For An Active Atlantic Hurricane Season?
Atlantic Hurricane Season has arrived and forecasters are calling for it to be an active one. So how prepared is Shreveport-Bossier for any evacuees that might come our way?
Caddo-Bossier Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Office Director Sandy Davis says because of lessons learned during Hurricane Katrina, we're ready.
"We certainly realized at that point what our potential was for mass sheltering," Davis says. "And we have continued in this region, and throughout the state, in trying to make ourself better prepared."
Davis tells KEEL News there are numerous areas where shelters will be set up if they're needed. We have a medical special needs shelter at the Bossier Civic Center for patients who need 24-hour care, but aren't hospitalized. There are three shelters for people who don't have their own vehicles and rely on public transportation. And two American Red Cross general population shelters are usually set up at LSU-S and Southern University-Shreveport.
We're hearing there's a 47% chance that a hurricane will hit the Gulf Coast, and Davis says that concerns him. "A Texas impact is pretty significant for us," he says. "People forget that we house a lot of evacuees from Texas, whenever you have a Galveston-Houston strike where you have large populations that have to be evacuated. We also support sheltering for those folks, not just for Louisiana residents."
And he says it takes the hard work of a lot of people to get the job done. He says people ask him all the time what the secret of his success is. He says it can be summed up in one word...relationships. "We build those relationships on a daily basis, and we maintain them. And when a bad day comes, we know who has what gap that needs to be filled and who has the asset to fill that gap."
Davis also discussed tornado preparedness. Listen to the two-part interview here: