As Laura Weakens To Tropical Storm, Tulsa First Responders Aid Relief Efforts

Thursday, August 27th 2020, 5:26 pm
By: CBS News, Kristin Wells

What made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane, Laura has now weakened to a tropical storm. To help with relief, some Tulsans are already in the midst of the aftermath.  

Making landfall with winds of 150 miles an hour, Laura left a wide path of destruction across Texas and Louisiana. It first came on shore after midnight near St. Charles Louisiana.

38 Tulsa firefighters arrived in southwestern Louisiana Thursday to help with rescue operations from Laura. Tulsa Area Emergency Management said it will send more help if it is needed.

“Today the state of Louisiana requested helicopter search and rescue teams and Tulsa is going to be answering that call as well with support teams from Tulsa Fire,” Joseph Kralicek with Tulsa Area Emergency Management said.

TPD’s Incident Management Team is in Baton Rouge helping people who had to evacuate their homes due to the storm find a place to stay.

A chemical plant fire near Lake Charles has forced people to shelter in place as a thick cloud of black smoke blankets the area.

Early reports indicate the storm surge that was predicted was not as bad as feared. However, thousands are without electricity and it could take days before it’s restored.

“Rescue teams are involved right now, making sure to restore power, protecting lives and we are already going to begin the rebuilding process,” said Texas Governor Abbott.

Hurricane Laura is responsible for at least four deaths in Louisiana, including a 14-year-old girl who died when a tree fell on her house.