Significant damage remains in Grant Parish nearly a month after Laura

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GRANT PARISH (KTVE/KARD) “It’s probably the worst catastrophe we’ve seen, I know it is in my lifetime” Don Arnold, President of the Grant Parish Police Jury said.

When Hurricane Laura barreled its way through the ArkLaMiss, Grant Parish was one of several that took the brunt of 110 MPH wind gusts. Arnold says everyone has seen damage. Some have seen more but everyone has lost something.

Nearly a month later… widespread damage can still be found, especially in the town of Colfax.

“Our first estimates on our timber damage alone is $100 million, and then 5 million on structural. We have over 305,000 cubic yards of vegetation debris that has been delivered so far, with one third of the parish, 30% roughly, being picked up” Arnold said.

To put this into perspective, other parishes like Ouachita have seen a third of that, and recover is nearly complete. With this being said, the parish has been hard at work collecting and disposing as much organic debris as possible.

Once the debris is picked up, it’s taken here on parish land, which is also FEMA approved, and it’s put into large pile like what you see behind me. Eventually, this debris is chopped up, burned and then taken off the property, which will eventually be restored to its original form.

The parish is thankful for the outpouring of support from contractors, local representatives, FEMA, GOHSEP, and the National Guard to name a few.

Beta is adding insult to injury, with it’s round of heavy rain. But no matter what 2020 has to offer, the parish is remaining resilient.

“This is kind of a one-two punch we’ve had this year, and not complaining, but grant parish will bounce back” Arnold said.

If the current rate of recover can continue, officials believe the parish should be back to some sense of normally in about 90 days. Officials are also asking for patience as they continue to pick up the pieces.

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