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All hands on deck: Local officials finish preparing for approaching storm

 

NATCHEZ — Local emergency management officials expect the brunt of Tropical Storm Barry to hit the Miss-Lou Saturday afternoon, bringing with it tropical force winds and heavy rain.

Adams County Emergency Management Director Robert Bradford said current National Weather Service forecasts suggest the area could start seeing tropical storm conditions between 4 and 5 p.m.

As rain bands move inland, tornadoes will also become a risk.

Bradford said current forecast models suggest the area could receive between 7 and 12 inches of rain between Saturday evening and Sunday evening. Some isolated areas could see up to 15 inches of rain.

Bradford said the area should continue to see intermittent showers as scattered rain bands from the storm move across the region Friday evening and through the day Saturday.

Bradford said because most of the heavy rains and storms from Barry will occur Saturday evening and early Sunday morning, he recommends residents make sure their cellphones are charged and that residents pay attention to weather alerts and warnings.

Bradford said the Adams County Safe Room, behind Chester Willis Field on Liberty Road, near the Natchez Community Swimming Pool, will be open Saturday morning at 8 a.m. and remain open through the duration of the storm. The Safe Room will be open for residents who need a cool place to stay in the event of a power outage.

To report downed trees, residents are asked to call 911 and not call the police department or sheriff’s office directly.

To report a power outage with Entergy call 1-800-Entergy.

In Vidalia, Mayor Buz Craft said the town continues to prepare for the storm.

Friday, Craft and town crews were lining up generators in the event of a power outage for the Vidalia Convention and Conference Center and other town equipment. The convention center would need power if it was needed as a shelter, Craft said.

Craft said town crews will be on standby during the storm to help limit any interruptions in service.

“We will be all hands on deck,” Craft said. “We are waiting on the storm and will deal with it when it comes.”

Sandbags are being offered in the following locations for area residents who need them:

  •  Adams County residents can get sandbags at the Foster Mound Road fire station and at the Natchez-Adams County Port. Both locations are self-serve and will require bringing a shovel.
  • City of Natchez residents can get sandbags at the Public Works Office, using Old Washington Road for access.
  • In Concordia Parish, sandbags can be acquired at the fire station on Airport Road in Vidalia, the Concordia Parish Correctional Facility on Louisiana 15 in Ferriday and the barn on Concordia Drive behind Harvest Church in Ferriday.
  • In Catahoula Parish, sandbags are available at the correctional facility on Old Columbia Road in Harrisonburg.
  • In Wilkinson County, sandbags are available at the courthouse at 525 Main Street in Woodville and at the police station in Centreville.

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