Entries in State of Emergency (5)


Gov. Jindal Declares State of Emergency for Louisiana


*UPDATE: The tropical storm warning for Louisiana has been discontinued. Tropical storm warnings are now in effect for the Mississippi-Alabama border eastward to the Suwannee River in Florida, and south of the Suwannee River to Englewood, Florida.


(NEW YORK) -- Gov. Bobby Jindal has declared a state of emergency for the state of Louisiana as Tropical Storm Debby approaches the coast.

Sunday morning, the National Weather Service issued a tropical storm warning from the mouth of the Pearl River to Morgan City. At 9 a.m., the storm was located approximately 170 miles southeast of the mouth of the Mississippi River and was expected to strengthen and head northwest toward Louisiana.

The state of emergency is in effect for 30 days unless terminated sooner, Jindal said in a statement.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Hurricane Irene Sends Tens of Thousands Fleeing the Coast

NOAA/National Weather Service/ National Hurricane CenterUPDATE: Hurricane Irene was downgraded early Friday morning to a category 2 storm with maximum sustained winds of 110 mph.

(KITTY HAWK, N.C.) -- The exodus from the North Carolina coast has begun and on Thursday night it was a slow motion, bumper to bumper march inland as tens of thousands heeded warnings to get out of the way of Hurricane Irene.

Gas stations are running out of fuel, ATM's are out of cash and one woman was out of a very special night.

"The TV showed the mandatory evacuation and I burst into tears," said Melissa Cook, who was supposed to get married this weekend.  "Everything I had planned and dreamed about."

Hurricane Irene's wave of disappointment also affected beach goers in South Carolina.  Police closed the beaches to swimming after six swimmers were rescued from rip currents caused by the massive storm.

As Irene -- a category 3 hurricane then with 115 mph winds -- blasted through the Bahamas, the U.S. began bracing for the storm's worst.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, under President Obama's direction, contacted East Coast mayors and governors potentially in Irene's path.  Later, she and FEMA director Craig Fugate held a conference call with state, local, and tribal officials on planning for the storm.

"Given the unpredictability of these storms, we are currently planning for several scenarios, including potential impacts to major metro areas and critical infrastructure," Napolitano said in a Department of Homeland Security news release.

Evacuation orders were issued along the coast of North Carolina Thursday in Dare, Currituck and Cateret counties.  There are 180,000 people just in Dare County, and another 150,000 people were told to get out of Ocean City, Maryland.

A state of emergency was declared in Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.

New York City's Mayor Michael Bloomberg said police are deploying more than 80 boats around the city as well as several helicopters to prepare for emergencies.  City hospitals have tested their emergency generators, and the city's airports are stockpiling diapers, cots, blankets, pillow and bottles of water.

Fearing Irene's wrath, Amtrak announced it is canceling all train service south of Washington D.C. for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Irene is traveling at 12 mph, making it a slow moving storm which will allow it to hover over an area, dump rain and batter it with ferocious winds for an expended period.  It is expected to slam into the North Carolina coast Saturday afternoon and then churn north along the coast as far as Boston.  She is expected to arrive in New York Sunday afternoon.

As the storm clears the Bahamas and continues over the warm water of the Atlantic, its wind speed is expected to strengthen and the size of the storm could increase to a category 4 with wind speeds of at least 131 mph.

Irene is expected to weaken somewhat as it claws its way up the coast, but will likely still be packing winds of 50 to 70 mph when it reaches New York City and Boston.  It is expected to dump six to 12 inches of rain on the Jersey shore, Long Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Arizona Wildfires Prompt State of Emergency, More Evacuations

Hemera Technologies/Thinkstock(SPRINGERVILLE, Ariz.) -- A state of emergency has been declared in Arizona for the Wallow Fire, which is still spreading, completely uncontained, in two counties.

Mountain communities in the eastern part of the state are on high alert as the fire continues chewing through tinder-dry terrain, growing by tens of thousands of acres every day.  New evacuations have been ordered for Greer, while residents of several other towns remain on standby to leave their homes as flames head their way.

About 3,000 people have been evacuated since the blaze began over a week ago.

As smoke spreads across the West, more than 2,500 firefighters are desperately trying to get a handle of the fire, which has burned nearly a quarter of a million acres.

Fire officials now say the blaze may have been started by an unattended campfire.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Deadly Tornadoes, Storms Hit South; Leave Several Dozens Dead

Ablestock/Thinkstock (file photo)(LINCOLN, Ala.) -- Deadly tornadoes and thunderstorms tore through the South Wednesday, killing over 200 people in five states in the latest round of storms to hit the region over the past several days, authorities said.

The majority of those deaths were reported in Alabama, where 180 people died, including 15 in the city of Tuscaloosa alone.

Mayor Walter Maddox confirmed that 15 people died Wednesday in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, a city of approximately 180,000 leveled by an estimated mile-wide tornado.

Maddox said at least a dozen city roads remain impassable and 83,000 homes were without power.  Several city buildings, including a fire station and a communication plant, have been damaged.

"We have way over 100 injuries throughout the city of Tuscaloosa," Mayor Maddox said Wednesday.  "We have hundreds of homes and businesses destroyed and hundreds more damaged."

Classes at the University of Alabama, which is located in Tuscaloosa, have been canceled for Thursday.

President Obama declared a state of emergency for the search and rescue response in Alabama, and Gov. Robert Bentley told ABC News affiliate WBMA-TV in Birmingham, Alabama that he expected Obama to declare another one to help pay for the cleanup.

The president will travel to Alabama on Friday to assess the damages, thank rescue workers and offer his condolences to the familes of victims.

Elsewhere, at least 10 people were killed by storms in Georgia, according to the Georgia Emergency Management Agency.

Another 32 were killed in Mississippi, the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency said.

At least 33 others are dead in Tennessee and eight more in Virginia, according to emergency management officials.

The weather system was expected to move into Georgia, Tennessee and Kentucky overnight and into the Carolinas by Thursday morning. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


California Storm: Evacuations Ordered, State of Emergency Declared

Photo Courtesy - Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) -- Southern California authorities issued mandatory evacuation orders for residents in mudslide-prone areas Tuesday night ahead of more heavy rain Wednesday.

The extreme weather conditions prompted Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to declare a state of emergency for six counties in the Greater Los Angeles region.  The counties affected are Kern, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo and Tulare.

Officials went door to door telling more than 200 homeowners in the foothill areas of La Canada Flintridge and La Cresenta that it was not safe to remain there.

If residents refuse the mandatory evacuation, officials make them sign papers acknowledging they are on their own.

Southern California has been hit hard by heavy rains since the weekend, creating scores of accidents and prompting residents to evacuate.

Weather forecasters predict the strongest in the series of storms will hit Southern California early Wednesday morning.

Los Angeles can expect three to six more inches of rain through Wednesday.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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