Initial report says nearly 5,000 homes flooded, number will rise - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Initial report says nearly 5,000 homes flooded, number will rise

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The Pearl River spills out of its banks near Slidell Saturday, March 12. (Photo by John Snell) The Pearl River spills out of its banks near Slidell Saturday, March 12. (Photo by John Snell)
BATON ROUGE, LA (WVUE) -

Thousands of Louisiana residents have been forced from their homes by flood water this week and the numbers are expected to grow. Initial reports indicate more than 4,985 homes received flood damage, forcing thousands of people to evacuate, according to the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP). This initial report does not include entire regions of the state that are still responding to flood emergencies, meaning the number will climb.

“Our first goal is to help our local partners through the response phase of this event,” said GOHSEP Director James Waskom. “We will begin to transition into the recovery phase as conditions improve."

State officials and representatives from FEMA have been working for several days to streamline the disaster assessment process that will ultimately determine how much federal support will be available to flood victims according to Waskom.

"The assessment work may begin in phases because the storms impact took several days to develop in some areas, he said. "But rest assured, that work will continue in all areas once it is safe for the joint FEMA/GOHSEP assessment teams to access other regions."

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