Temporary Water Filling Station Now Available

The City of Natchitoches has experienced a water system failure along the I-49 corridor. At this time, residents without water will be able to obtain water through a source provided by the City’s Utility Department at Natchitoches Central High School. The water filling station is located inside the north gate near the softball fields. Residents must provide their own containers as we are unable to provide those at this time.

From Patsy Ward Hoover, Parish District 2

Any one in District Two of Natchitoches Parish can call Patsy ward Hoover for non threatening issues.

I am in direct contact with the Highway Department, Chairman of the Council and also our State Police Jury Association director. We are working to assist you .

Thank you to everyone who is helping neighborhoods. We are all in this together.

I can be reached at 318-527-9294

Cane River Lake opens with cautions issued

Cane River Lake is currently at 98.7 MSL
 
The lake and landings are open to boating traffic.  Please use caution and stay close to the center channel as there are many downed trees along the shorelines that extend into the lake.  Watch for floating debris, and navigate carefully.  Remember to boat sober, safe, and always wear your life jackets.  Questions or concerns contact Betty Fuller 318-617-3235.
 
Betty Fuller 
Commission Administrator 

CLECO 11am Update on Power Restoration

Aug. 28, 2020 (11 a.m.) Cleco has restored power to 43,550 customers. As of 11 a.m., approximately 96,450 customers are without power.

“We’re asking customers to please be patient, as we’re are moving as quickly and safely as we can to get everyone back on,” said James Lass, director of distribution operations and emergency management. “Being that the storm has fully passed, and we have a full day to work, we expect to make more progress today.”

Key points on Hurricane Laura:

Strongest storm to hit Louisiana since 1856

Hard hit parishes were Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Grant, Rapides and Vernon

Damage to transmission infrastructure must be repaired first

Uprooted trees; these trees fell on power lines; these lines have to be picked up Knocked down electric poles; these poles must be changed out; this takes time

More than 2,000 individuals working (this includes regular employees, distribution contractors, vegetation specialists and transmission contractors)

Cleco serves a lot of heavily wooded, rural areas; it takes more time to get these areas back up

Below is an overview of how Cleco restores power after a storm:

Safety is a priority in everything Cleco does. Once conditions are safe, workers begin to access damage by land and/or air.

Next, transmission lines are inspected and repaired. These lines are critical because they carry electricity from the power plants. Once transmission lines are repaired, workers begin repairing distribution lines. These are the lines that carry power to homes and businesses.

Power is then restored to critical community services first, such as nursing homes, hospitals, police departments, etc.

Power is then restored to the greatest number of customers in the shortest amount of time until power is restored to all customers who can receive power.

NPSB School Update from Superintendent Grant Eloi

NPSB School Update from Superintendent Grant Eloi

“The Natchitoches Parish School Board’s thoughts and prayers are with our entire community and state. We are thankful that none of our schools received major damage. As you all know, the vast majority of the parish is without power and will continue to be without power for the foreseeable future. Furthermore, many of our rural roads are not passable by vehicle, let alone by bus. Currently our priority is the safety of our students, staff, parish and residents. The school board had planned for a soft start this week in which students only attended one day of school. We are cancelling the soft start and are currently considering a September 8th full start of school. This date is our target but will be largely dependent upon the changing status of the parish’s power situation. All offices will reopen as soon as power is restored. We know that school is important but the safety of all community members is paramount. This is a time where #TogetherWeCan means more than ever.”

-Superintendent, Grant Eloi

NEW: Boil Advisory

BOIL ADVISORY
Natchitoches Water System
PWS ID# 1069007
Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana

Date: August 28, 2020
For Immediate Release

I-49 Corridor Extending to Highway 6 West and Old Highway 6within the City of Natchitoches Distribution System did experience a low pressure problem on August 27, 2020. This drop in system pressure below 20 pounds has been caused by a water leak in which the water supply had to be shut off for a period of time.

Because of this drop in system pressure, the water within our water distribution system is of questionable microbiological quality.

Therefore, as a precaution, the City of Natchitoches Distribution System is issuing a BOIL ADVISORY effective immediately for I-49 Corridor extending to Highway 6 and Old Highway 6.  This BOIL ADVISORY is to remain in effect until rescinded by the Water System.

It is recommended that all consumers in the area mentioned abovedisinfect their water before consuming it (including fountain drinks), making ice, brushing teeth, or using it for food preparation or rinsing of foods by the following means:

Boil water for one (1) full minute in a clean container.  The one minute starts after the water has been brought to a rolling boil.  (The flat taste can be eliminated by shaking the water in a clean bottle or pouring it from one clean container to another, or by adding a pinch of salt to each quart of water that is boiled.)

Again, please be sure to disinfect your own water prior to consumption until you have been advised otherwise.

This Boil advisory does not affect the remainder City of Natchitoches Water Distribution System.

UPDATED: Power Restoration; Closings

Banks:
BOM and BOMF – Open (Some may be delayed )(University Drive – CLOSED)
City Bank & Trust – Closed
Exchange Bank – Closed

Utility Compaines:
City of Natchitoches – 5 to 7 Days
SWEPCO – September 3, 2020 by 10pm
CLECO – 4 days to 7 days.
* These estimates were provided by the companies as of 7pm, Thursday, August 27, 2020 and are subject to change.  These timeframes were reported as a “large” percentage of service restored and NOT fully restored

CLECO – Power outages as of 8 a.m, Friday, August 28, 2020
Acadia – 2,800
Allen – 5,900
Avoyelles – 5,500
Beauregard – 5,100
Calcasieu – 2,500
Catahoula – 18
Desoto – 1,600
Evangeline – 6,800
Grant – 7,400
Iberia – 3,500
Jefferson Davis – 39
Lasalle – 15
Natchitoches – 640
Rapides – 41,000
Sabine – 6,300
St. Landry – 3,400

 

Internet/Cable TV:
Suddenlink: No – return call
CP-Tel/Epic-Touch – No Update

Road condition update:
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development advises motorists that multiple roads in District 08 (Central LA Region) remain obstructed this evening due to downed trees, debris, and power lines as a result of Hurricane Laura.

All affected roads in Avoyelles Parish have been cleared and reopened but the remaining Parishes (Rapides, Natchitoches, Sabine, Grant, Vernon and Winn) all have numerous state highways with debris accumulated.

For information concerning a certain road –  Call 511 or visit www.511la.org

Grocery Stores:
Super 1 Foods – Open/Delayed Opening
Wal-Mart – No Update
People’s Food Warehouse – No Update

Schools:
Natchitoches Parish Schools – Closed today
Northwestern State University – Closed today
CLTCC – Closed today
LSUA – Closed today and Monday
St. Mary’s – Closed today and Monday

Gyms:
Natchitoches Flipping Athletics – Closed

Government Offices:
Natchitoches Parish Office of Community Services – Closed
Natchitoches Parish Courthouse – Closed
Clerk of Court – Closed/Power Outage
City Offices – Closed
State Offices – Most Closed

Attractions:
Cane River Creole National Historical Park – Closed
Louisiana Sport Hall of Fame – Closed

Communications Companies
Radio/TV/Newspaper – as power permits

If you would like to have a business or be included in the list, please email details to  NPJNatLa@gmail.com

 

Power Restoration; Closings


UPDATED: 9:29am
https://natchitochesparishjournal.com/2020/08/28/updated-power-restoration-closings/

Utility Compaines:
City of Natchitoches – 5 to 7 Days
SWEPCO – September 3, 2020 by 10pm
CLECO – 4 days to 7 days.
* These estimates were provided by the companies as of 7pm, Thursday, August 27, 2020 and are subject to change.  These timeframes were reported as a “large” percentage of service restored and NOT fully restored

Internet/Cable TV:
Suddenlink: No – return call
CP-Tel/Epic-Touch – No Update

Road condition update:
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development advises motorists that multiple roads in District 08 (Central LA Region) remain obstructed this evening due to downed trees, debris, and power lines as a result of Hurricane Laura.

All affected roads in Avoyelles Parish have been cleared and reopened but the remaining Parishes (Rapides, Natchitoches, Sabine, Grant, Vernon and Winn) all have numerous state highways with debris accumulated.

For information concerning a certain road –  Call 511 or visit www.511la.org

Grocery Stores:
Super 1 Foods – Open/Delayed Opening
Wal-Mart – No Update
People’s Food Warehouse – No Update

Schools:
Natchitoches Parish Schools – Closed today
Northwestern State University – Closed today
CLTCC – Closed today
LSUA – Closed today and Monday

Government Offices:
Natchitoches Parish Office of Community Services – Closed
Natchitoches Parish Courthouse – Closed
Clerk of Court – Closed/Power Outage
City Offices – Closed
State Offices – Most Closed

Attractions:
Cane River Creole National Historical Park – Closed

Communications Companies
Radio/TV/Newspaper – as power permits

If you would like to have a business or be included in the list, please email details to  NPJNatLa@gmail.com

 

City of Natchitoches utility workers fixing downed power lines, waiting to get power from CLECO and SWEPCO

City Utility workers are isolating downed power lines and poles so they can be ready to reenergize when it’s electricity provider CLECO comes back online. So far 50% of the City’s main circuits have been prepared and are ready to be energized, but everything is dead in the water until CLECO’s generation plant comes back online.

There are 41 transmission lines down in CLECO’s system, which can each be a hundred miles long. They’re working on the problem but the City has received no estimated time of when power will be restored. City crews have over 50 broken poles. They’re contracting with a crew out of Oklahoma called Mid-Con Energy Partners. Twenty-two men were sent with 9 big trucks. They’re currently working on Hwy. 1 South where 31 poles were snapped, in a row. Electric Department Supervisor Lee McKinney said crews are working 16 hour days to do everything they can to restore power to residents as soon as possible.

SWEPCO is also having issues supplying power, so there’s no supply going to the main sewer plant on Red River. As of 6 am on Aug. 27 there were 10,000 customers out in Natchitoches Parish and counting.

Hurricane Laura Devastates Power Grid in Central Louisiana; Nearly 2,700 Workers Responding

The intense winds and driving rains of Hurricane Laura shoved trees, utility poles and wires to the ground, leaving 94% of Southwestern Electric Power Co. (SWEPCO) customers in eight central Louisiana parishes without power.

At 5 p.m. on Aug. 27, with restoration in progress, 41,000 customers in DeSoto, Bienville, Grant, Natchitoches, Red River, Sabine, Winn and Vernon parishes remained without power.

In total, approximately 128,000 customers were without power, including 79,000 in the Shreveport-Bossier area, 8,100 in Texas and 400 in Arkansas.

“We have 2,500 workers coming to help more than 300 SWEPCO employees restore power. All external crews are assigned to help our customers in Louisiana,” said Drew Seidel, SWEPCO vice president of Distribution Region Operations. “Our Texas-based crews are restoring power to customers in Center, Carthage and other areas in the state hit hard by the storm. Once they complete their work in Texas, they’ll begin working in Louisiana.”

“We expect it will take several days to restore power,” Seidel said.

Customers without power who are on life support systems or need uninterrupted electric service for health reasons should make alternate arrangements.

Hurricane Laura smashed into SWEPCO’s Valley District this morning as a Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph maximum sustained winds. It continued through northwest Louisiana and southwest Arkansas as a Category 1 hurricane and tropical storm.

At the peak, 136,000 SWEPCO customers in Louisiana and East Texas were without power.

A soon as it was safe, SWEPCO crews began restoring power to several critical customers in the Ark-La-Tex. Employees are addressing hazards, including hundreds of downed power lines.

“All downed lines should be considered energized and dangerous,” Seidel said. “Don’t touch anything in contact with the line, such as trees, fences or puddles of water, since they can conduct electricity.”

By dark, SWEPCO’s outage response team will have a high-level assessment of the damage caused by Hurricane Laura.

“We’ll begin a detailed assessment of the damage first thing tomorrow morning. This will be critical in determining how long it will take us to restore power,” Seidel said.

 

“The quickest way to get updates on your outage is to sign up for email or text alerts at SWEPCO.com/Alerts,” said Carey Sullivan, SWEPCO director of Communications. “You’ll receive information as soon as we have it in our system.”

City of Natchitoches Opportunity: Events Center General Manager

POSITION: Natchitoches Events Center – General Manager

DESCRIPTION: Directs the day to day operations of the Events Center including development, programming, financial management, marketing, operations and community relations for the facility.

QUALIFICATIONS: Degree in Business Administration, Marketing, Communications or related field. Prior experience in a related field is preferred.

CONTACT: City of Natchitoches, Human Resources Department located at 1400 Sabine Street, or P.O. Box 37, Natchitoches, LA 71458-0037. Applications may also be picked up upstairs at City hall, located at 700 Second St., or you may download an application on line at http://www.natchitochesla.gov

DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS: Applications will be accepted Through: September 8, 2020

THE CITY OF NATCHITOCHES IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER.

Notice of Death – August 27, 2020

NATCHITOCHES:
Lee Earl Howard
August 26, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Joe McKnight
May 31, 1962 – August 23, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Joe McKnight
May 31, 1962 – August 23, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Jimmy Herman Sheffield
April 01, 1940 – August 16, 2020
Service: A Memorial Mass will be held Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 10am, at The Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Natchitoches, La.

SABINE:
Theodore Brassard
April 27, 1948 – August 20, 2020
Service: Saturday, August 29 at 2 pm at Warren Meadows Funeral Home Chapel

POSTPONED: Mayor-Elect Ronnie Williams’ Inauguration Celebration

Due to the damage caused by Hurricane Laura, the inaugural celebration for Mayor Williams has been rescheduled for Friday, Sept. 4 at 6 p.m. Mayor Williams is working with all local agencies to ensure residents are safe and assessing damage caused by the hurricane. He looks forward to seeing everyone next Friday.  September 4, 2020.

The Inauguration Celebration of Mayor-Elect Ronnie Williams Jr. will take place Friday, Aug. 28 at 5 pm on the Natchitoches Riverbank Stage. The program will begin at 6 pm. The public is welcome to witness Mayor-Elect Ronnie Williams Jr. take the oath of office as Mayor of Natchitoches. The oath will be administered by Clerk of Court David Stamey.

Laura Arrives

Hurricane Laura landed as a Category 4 hurricane.  We currently have strong winds, rain and some power outages in the area.

Residents are strongly encouraged to shelter in place and stay off the roads until the weather conditions improve due to increased winds and possibility of flying debris. In the event of downed utility lines, please do not touch or move any lines as no line is guaranteed safe and should be handled by the appropriate entity. Residents can expect wind damage that may cause trees, limbs, or other debris to fall on your property. Please move those to the edge of the street if possible. 

Due to the pandemic, local shelters are not available at this time. If you need to evacuate from your home please consider staying with a friend or relative to weather the storm. There are also hotels in the area with accommodations at this time.

In the event of an emergency, please call 911. For further updates as they relate to Hurricane Laura, please follow our local media.

PUBLIC NOTICE: Hurricane Laura update and river closing

Cane River Lake is currently at 97.4 MSL.

Pool Stage is 98.0 MSL

Flood Stage is 99.0 MSL

Hurricane Laura is forecasted to potentially have significant impacts to our area. Cane River Lake property owners need to be prepared. Please secure loose items, check ropes securing boats and other things. Monitor your property and remain diligent in observing water levels and weather conditions for personal safety and property protection. Cane River Lake is expected to rise rapidly, have fallen trees and other debris that potentially will interfere with safe navigation, therefore the lake will close at 7 pm today August 26, 2020. Once the storm passes a lake assessment will occur. The lake will reopen once it is safe to do so. Making decisions should be based on information from the National Weather Service, Governmental Agencies, and your knowledge. Due to the intensity of this storm and the safety of the Commissions employee water levels will be posted as often as it is safe to do so. To view lake levels visit the Commissions web site at http://www.caneriverwaterway.com (click at the top on NEWS, in the drop-down box click PRESS RELEASES, scroll down, and click on LAKE STATUS. For more information contact Betty Fuller @ 318-617-3235.
Thanks,

Betty Fuller
Commission Administrator

Notice of Death – August 26, 2020

NATCHITOCHES:
Lee Earl Howard
August 26, 2020
Arrangements TBA

Joe McKnight
May 31, 1962 – August 23, 2020
Arrangements TBA

SABINE:
Theodore Brassard
April 27, 1948 – August 20, 2020
Service: Saturday, August 29 at 2 pm at Warren Meadows Funeral Home Chapel

WINN:
Hazel Chelette Roshto
December 04, 1938 – August 25, 2020
Arrangements TBA

John Lewis “Luther” Kerry
April 10, 1938 – August 21, 2020
Service: Thursday August 27 at 2 pm at The Family Church in Winnfield

BOIL ADVISORY FOR JOHNSON CHUTE ROAD LIFTED

The City of Natchitoches’ Distribution System would like to notify the public the Boil Advisory issued for Johnson Chute Road on Monday, August 24, 2020 has been lifted. The Louisiana Department of Health collected a sample of water from Johnson Chute on Tuesday, August 25, 2020 and notified the City of Natchitoches on Wednesday, August 26, 2020 the water was safe for human consumption and use.

The City of Natchitoches appreciates the public’s patience during this time.

 

Hurricane Warning

Many people in our area were roused from their sleep at 4:30 Wednesday morning with a “Hurricane Warning” alert on their phones. The message said the warning was in effect for our area.

Here is the most recent post from the National Weather Service:
Tropical Storm and Hurricane warnings are now in effect for portions of the Four-States region. Hurricane force winds are likely in the hurricane warning, and hurricane force gusts are possible in the Tropical Storm warning. Heavy rain is also likely, with flash flooding possible.

There is a flash flood watch for all of northwest Louisiana through 7:00 pm on Friday. Use caution if you have to be on the roads.

The NPJ will update the forecast and latest weather conditions as Hurricane Laura makes its way into Louisiana.

Ronnie Williams, Jr., Mayor

Ronnie Williams, Jr. assumed the duties and responsibilities of Office Of the Mayor of the City of Natchitoches Tuesday morning, August 25, 2020

The public is invited to attend Ronnie’s Inauguration Celebration which will be held this Friday, Aug. 28, at 5 pm with a program at 6 pm on the downtown riverbank stage in Natchitoches, Louisiana.