Joshua Tullos, left, and Michael Davis fill sandbags on Morgan City's David Drive under the overpass. They live in the city's Lakeside Subdivision.
The Daily Review/Bill Decker
Residents head for sand piles to protect homes
BAYOU VISTA — Piles of sand turned into meeting places Wednesday, when Tri-City area people came to make sandbags for protection from a quickly developing tropical system.
At the parish barn on La. 182 near the Bayou Vista Water tower, Dennis Romero and Richard LaCoste were filling bags in the muggy heat.
In a season marked by flash floods and river flooding, Romero’s Bayou Vista home has yet to take on water.
“I’m going to make sure I don’t,” Romero said. “Or I’m going to try my best.”
LaCoste said he remembers Hurricane Audrey, the June 1957 storm that killed hundreds in Cameron Parish. He said his living arrangements are different now.
“That’s one thing about a houseboat,” LaCoste said. “It floats.”
Down La. 182 in Berwick, Herbert Estay Jr. was filling bags with some help from his daughter, Estelle, 8, at the sand pile under the overpass in front of Town Hall.
Estay lives on Hogan Street in Berwick’s Country Club Estates, where 39 homes had water in them after the June 7 deluge. Neighbor Kevin Lewis, who lives on Hebert Street, and Wardell Johnson were filling sandbags nearby.
So far, Estay has avoided home flooding. “It’s been up to my house,” he said.
Now a new storm is threatening.
“It is what it is,” Estay said. “That’s part of living in south Louisiana.”
But he’s not as stoic about the flood situation in Country Club Estates, where residents say drainage problems have worsened in the last few years.
“It’s amazing how we never had this problem and now we have the problem,” he said.
And then: “I’m a disgruntled resident.”
Before he left with a pickup load of sandbags, Estay handed out bottled water.
Up the road at Morgan City’s David Drive, where the city government placed sand under the overpass, Michael Davis and Joshua Tullos, residents of Lakeside Subdivision, were filling bags.
Like Romero and Estay, Davis said no water has been in his home this year.
“But close,” Davis said. “It’s gotten to the back door.”
Davis recently moved from the place that has been most affected by this year’s high water.
“We used to live in Stephensville, where it did this all the time,” Davis said. “A year ago, we moved to Lakeside and thought we were running away from all the sandbags.”
Now, “we’re doing all we can to prepare and hoping.”
Here are the notices from local governments about sandbag availability:
—Sand and sandbags became available Wednesday at the St. Mary Parish barn at La. 182 and Little Pines Lane in Bayou Vista next to the water tower and at the barn by the Hanson Canal on La. 182 in Garden City. Residents should bring their own shovels.
—The city of Morgan City has placed two piles of sand under the U.S. 90 bridge on David Drive in Morgan City. This sand is for public use and is not bagged.
Any citizen wishing to obtain a small amount of sand bags may go to that location and fill the amount they need. Remember to bring a shovel.
—Berwick has placed sand near Town Hall under the overpass for use in sandbags.
—In Patterson, sand for sandbags is available on Taft Street near the water plant and across the railroad tracks near the fire station.
—Sand and bags will be available behind the car wash at the corner of Stephensville Road and La. 70 for lower St. Martin Parish residents to fill their own sandbags, according to a St. Martin Parish Sheriff’s Office news release.
The site will be open from 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Thursday and Friday.