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Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome speaks at an update concerning preparedness in East Baton Rouge Parish for the approaching Hurricane Delta,Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020 at the Mayor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness.

Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome says the city-parish had to respond to 23 calls for water assistance overnight due to an outer band of Hurricane Delta that dumped as much as 12 inches of rain in northern East Baton Rouge Parish. 

Most of those calls, 13 to be exact, were because cars became stuck in standing water on flooded streets and nine were calls were at homes that flooded overnight. 

"We sent search and rescue teams out to address them, none had to be taken to shelters and none were life-threatening situations," Broome said. "This is why we're stressing that residents stay off the roadways. Only travel if necessary."

Broome's warning comes hours before Hurricane Delta is scheduled to make landfall in southwest Louisiana around 7 p.m. Friday. The Baton Rouge area is under a tropical storm warning. 

Other parts of the Baton Rouge region saw close to 1.5 to 2 inches of rain overnight as the outer bands of the storm moved across the Metro area. 

Fred Raiford, the city-parish's director of transportation and development, said the northern end of the parish experienced between 8 to 12 inches of rainfall Thursday night. 

Reports of flooding emerged Friday morning on social media in the Copper Mill area and in Baker. WBRZ reported that Baker Mayor Darnell Waites said the three-hour intense rainfall had flooded 25 homes there. 

"When you get that kind of rain, our system just won't be able to handle it. I know people get frustrated at hearing that but it's the engineering truth," Raiford said. "(Baker) had a struggle last night, but right now there's in pretty good shape. The water is receding."  

Raidford said the city-parish seems to be in good shape to handle the rainfall expected from Delta from Friday night into Saturday when they predict another 5 inches of rain throughout the parish. 

Trash and recycling services have been suspended Friday, and Broome said they are tentatively suspended on Saturday as well. 

"We'll resume normal pick up on Monday but we have to see what the weather outcome will be on Saturday to determine if service will resume," she said. 


Email Terry Jones at tjones@theadvocate.com