Officials: Five deaths reported in Louisiana from winter weather event
NEW ORLEANS — Five people have died in Louisiana as a result of the winter weather event that froze and shut down interstate systems and sent local water systems into crisis mode.
Gov. John Bel Edwards, Mayor Mitch Landrieu, Jefferson Parish President Mike Yenni and other officials gathered for an update Thursday afternoon.
Low water pressure, leaking and busted pipes and other issues continue to be a problem as temperatures rise and the roads thaw.
Boil advisories are still in effect for the East Bank of Orleans and Jefferson parishes, St. John the Baptist Parish and Lafourche Parish.
Several school districts in the New Orleans metro area are remaining closed Friday because of water pressure issues.
Edwards and Landrieu said boil advisories will likely remain in effect for the next couple of days.
“We expect that everything will be back to normal by Monday,” Edwards said.
Restrooms are mostly closed at Armstrong International Airport in Kenner, which is still experiencing low water pressure.
Both Ochsner hospitals in Jefferson Parish have secured alternate water sources so they are fully functional.
All bus and street car services have been restored in New Orleans.
Landrieu warned that leaking and busted pipes will continue to be a problem as temperatures rise. Residents are urged to check their pipes on their property.
Drainage and power capacity at the Sewerage and Water Board are not a problem, Landrieu said. He said 98 percent of the city's drainage pumps are operational.
In Jefferson Parish, 72 water mains have been repaired on the East Bank, with 10 that still need to be fixed.
Yenni said he expects water pressure to be back to normal within 24 hours.
Many of the larger leaks were found on industrial properties in Orleans Parish, officials said.
DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson said all interstate systems are open in Louisiana except for I-110 in Baton Rouge, but he expects that stretch of highway to reopen later Thursday afternoon.
Hotels, restaurants and entertainment venues have been in contact with city officials. Many have had to close because of water pressure issues.
Watch the full update below: