Southwest Louisiana hit with another natural disaster; 5 lives claimed in record flooding

LAKE CHARLES< LA — Southwest Louisiana has just experienced a fourth national disaster in the last nine months, and this time the flooding has claimed multiple lives.

News Center 7′s Kayla Courvell spoke with a Lake Charles police lieutenant about where the area is at now.

From Hurricane Laura to Hurricane Delta to an ice storm, and now record flooding. The area surrounding Lake Charles has dealt with one disaster after another.

“It was treacherous for many, many hours.” Lake Charles Police Lt. Jeff Keenum said Monday’s rain and flooding in southwest Louisiana was nothing like he’s seen in his 38 years living there.

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“I saw the water as people were trying to go through up to their hoods. You could barely see their headlights,” Keenum said.

With many ditches and storm drains still filled with debris from the 2020 hurricane season, a foot of rain falling in just a few hours made things even worst.

An area near McNeese State University was looking more like a lake than a campus. When it started raining, kids were already in school and by dismissal, roads were impassable, and students were stranded.

Parents who were trying to get to their kids were getting stuck in the roadway and the high water left cars abandoned on the sides of the road. Hundreds of people needed to be rescued from their vehicles and flooded homes.

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Keenum said, “There were so many vehicles parked every which way because they were driving and got caught and so much debris in the roadway, it was a challenge to get in and around.”

According to CNN, 5 deaths are currently being investigated as weather-related.

“It’s so unfortunate and so tragic that anyone had to lose their life as a result of this storm.” Keenum said.

He went on to say that he is not sure how much more the people of southwest Louisiana can take.

“It gives me goosebumps to talk about because I’m certain people’s mindset and mental stability is close to the breaking point. I mean how much can a person stand? I know God never gives you anything you can’t handle, but man it certainly seems like we need a break here in southwest Louisiana,” Keenum said.

Kayla Courvell

Kayla Courvell

I was born and raised in a small town just north of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and decided as a child I was going to be a news reporter.