Coast Guard aerial tour shows Hurricane Zeta’s full impact

Tracking the Tropics

NEW ORLEANS – A big part of getting southeast Louisiana back on its feet requires getting workers back on the water.

A top Coast Guard official is taking time to inspect the area’s waterways by helicopter.

Vice Admiral Steven Poulin is the Atlantic Area Commander for the Coast Guard. Poulin spent much of his day in the air inspecting Louisiana’s waterways.

From that vantage point, you can see the storm surge that covers Grand Isle, as well as the beaten and breached burrito levee that opened the door for Hurricane Zeta’s water to rush over the island.

Also a big priority, the flooding around the camps in Cocodrie, which was ground zero for Zeta.

“To me, that is the greatest area of concern right now,” Poulin said. “We’re working on coastal Mississippi. We’re working on Alabama and Florida as well. But I want to see what the impacts are right now to that landfall area.”

Poulin says that the Coast Guard hasn’t received a lot of rescue calls. So he was more focused on anything blocking the waterways.

Boats are moored along the Mississippi River waiting for it to reopen.

“Our focus is three-fold,” Poulin said. “The first is safety of life. That’s what we do. The second is to ensure that the waterways are safe, and if there is damage, work with port and stakeholders to remove those obstructions to get commerce moving. And thirdly is to respond to environmental damage.”

The Coast Guard says after investigating those reports of possible oil spills, they found no oil.

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