As Louisiana continues freezing Gov. Edwards asks Biden for emergency declaration


    Louisiana was mostly frozen Feb. 16 after a winter storm hit the state. (Photo by Jarvis DeBerry / Louisiana Illuminator)

    Gov. John Bel Edwards asked President Joe Biden to declare an emergency in Louisiana in response to a winter storm that has caused multiple deaths, power outages and water shortages across the state.

    In a letter the governor sent Wednesday evening, Edwards writes, “Extreme winter weather, including record low temperatures, snow, sleet and freezing rain, has been destructive for many areas of Louisiana, most notably through continued power and water outages across the state. This emergency declaration will help Louisiana better respond to this crisis and protect the health and safety of our people,”

    In a statement, Edwards said, “I spoke with President Biden on Tuesday about the severe impact this historic weather is having on Louisiana, and I am confident that working with our federal and local partners we can overcome these challenges, which are felt particularly hard in communities still recovering from hurricanes since last year.”

    According to press release from the governor’s office, Edwards “requested direct federal assistance, specifically commodities and supplies in response to the extended power outage and also Emergency Protective measures under the FEMA Public Assistance program.”

    A copy of the governor’s letter is available here.