La. Residents take shelter for tropical storm Karen - WKRN News 2

La. Residents take shelter for tropical storm Karen

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Plaquemines Parish, LA -

Louisiana residents left their homes due to a state of emergency that was declared last week and went to shelters offering safety in their areas.

"I know it's an inconvenience to ask people to evacuate and nothing happens but like I said I would much rather do it on a side of caution," said Guy Laigast, Director of Emergency Operations, in Plaquemines Parish.

Plaquemines Parish residents evacuated their homes for fear of the tropical storm Karen, especially after enduring two devastating hurricanes in the last nine years.

"I'm here for the storm, I'm running," said evacuee, Dabina Bartholomew. 

Bartholomew is just one of many Plaquemines Parish residents who took safety at the area shelter as Tropical Storm Karen gets closer to southeastern Louisiana.

A mandatory evacuation was issued for parts of Plaquemines Parish after officials declared a state of emergency last week. The state of emergency has since downgraded to voluntary evacuations after the unpredictable storm weakened.

"In Braithwaite the levees are only eight feet, there is always a possibility of those being over the top.The original storm surge protection was five to eight feet which is too close for comfort," explained Laigast.

Braithwaite has suffered tremendous devastation in recent years after two unforgettable hurricanes. 

Two years ago hurricane Irene destroyed more than 400 homes in the Braithwaite area. Six years before Irene hit, hurricane Katrina destroyed just as many homes. 

Emergency operation officials said it's their goal is to make sure the devastation doesn't happen again.

"As much as I don't like to lose homes, I don't like to lose people," said Laigast.

WKRN News 2 and our sister station KLFY 10 in Lafayette, Louisiana are tracking this storm and will continue to provide the latest updates.

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