City Provides Zeta Cleanup and Recovery Information
NEW ORLEANS — The City of New Orleans provided an update on the impacts in the aftermath of Hurricane Zeta. City, state and federal agencies have begun damage assessments and are continuing to do so throughout this week. Below is a list of agency updates with relevant safety and recovery information.
As of Thursday afternoon there were approximately 125,000 power outages reported for the New Orleans metro area. Entergy New Orleans is working to restore lost power. Entergy anticipates the majority of restoration will be complete by this weekend.
At the peak of outages, 73 sewage stations were without power. Entergy restoration has lowered that number to 37, with additional restorations expected shortly. While the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans is not currently experiencing an overloading of the sewer system here in Orleans Parish, out of an abundance of caution, residents are asked to reduce the amount of wastewater leaving their homes if possible. That means doing a little less laundry and running the dishwasher fewer times. All wastewater is collected at sewage pump stations throughout the city.
The City encourages all residents to stay safe during power outages with the following tips. Stay away from downed power lines and report immediately to Entergy at 1-800-ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749). Do not touch downed trees or power lines as wires may be energized. Treat every intersection with traffic lights out as a four-way stop. Operate generators safely:
- Operate generators in well ventilated locations outdoors away from all doors, windows and vent openings.
- Locate generators so that exhaust fumes cannot enter homes through windows, doors or other building openings.
- Do not refuel generators while they are running.
- Turn generators off and let them cool before refueling.
- Generators get extremely hot and will cause severe burns if not handled with caution.
- Do not store gas or flammable liquids in your home.
- Never try to power the house with a generator (back feeding); this is an extremely dangerous practice and could overload circuitry and burn down your home.
Medical Special Needs
The New Orleans Health Department and the Louisiana Department of Health are working with residents who are power dependent for medical reasons. As part of this initiative, the City will be opening three Oxygen Exchange sites across the city, where residents who are on oxygen can swap out an empty tank for a full tank, free of charge. The following locations will open at 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. beginning, Oct. 30:
- New Orleans Fire Station 1, 2920 Magazine St.
- New Orleans Fire Station 27, 2118 Elysian Fields Ave.
- New Orleans Fire Station 40, 2500 General DeGaulle Drive
The Departments of Parks and Parkways, Sanitation, Public Works, and Mosquito, Termite, and Rodent Control Board are working together with Entergy to clear debris from roadways, prioritizing major thoroughfares. The Louisiana National Guard is also providing assistance in route clearing and debris removal in Orleans Parish. There have been more than 800 tree emergencies reported, more than 200 Entergy poles down, and hundreds of traffic lights out.
Please call 311 to report downed trees or limbs in the right of way.
Residents are reminded to stay off the roads as much as possible, to use extreme caution around debris, and to treat intersections with lights out as four-way stops. The City is also asking residents to remove vehicles from neutral grounds to allow access for debris removal.
The New Orleans Regional Transit Authority began a phased reinstatement of bus service in the wake of Hurricane Zeta. See a list of major routes that will be operating hourly at norta.com, routes that are suspended due to road hazards and additional information at norta.com. The RTA will continue to restore service as conditions allow. For up-to-date real time information, riders are encouraged to download the GoMobile app or call Rideline at 504-248-3900 today until 9 p.m. or during regular business hours, 5 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Damaged Homes and Businesses
There have been some reports of structural damage to homes and businesses. Those with damage are asked to report information and photos to the State of Louisiana online survey at damage.la.gov. That information will help local, state, and federal officials understand the level of damage in Orleans Parish. Completion of this survey is not an application for or guarantee of assistance, nor does it initiate a claim to your insurance provider. Contact information will be used to provide information on resources available as well as how to apply for any assistance that may be available.
Volunteer organizations are offering assistance to residents whose homes were damaged. If you would like to request assistance with damage from Hurricane Zeta, please call the Crisis Clean Up Hotline at (504) 350-0788. They will connect you with volunteers from local organizations who can assist with fallen trees, tarping roofs, and debris removal. All services are free. Assistance is not guaranteed and depends on the volume of requests. The hotline will remain operational through Nov. 13.
Regularly scheduled trash and recycling will continue. Additionally, the City of New Orleans is activating its post-storm debris removal contract to conduct storm-related cleanup. Residents are asked to collect major storm debris and place between the sidewalk and the street before Monday, Nov. 2, following the guidelines outlined below. The information below is for major storm debris. Small branches and yard waste can be cut, bundled and placed curbside on your regular second collection day.
As a reminder, commercial properties and those serviced by private trash contracts are responsible for their own debris removal. Please do not block intersections, sidewalks, or fire hydrants.
Residents conducting cleanup activities on their property are encouraged to operate chainsaws safely with the following tips:
- Be aware of overhead hazards such as power lines and dead limbs
- Wear eye protection, gloves and closed toe boots
- Avoid wearing loose clothing
- Do not cut anything above shoulder height
- Work with a partner when possible
- Do not refuel a hot chainsaw
- In the event of an accident, call 9-1-1 and hold direct pressure on wound