Debris removal from winter storm is ongoing in EBR Parish


BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Now that the winter weather has almost passed us by, the City-Parish and Entergy is in the process of collecting debris left over from the storm.

The Magnolia Woods neighborhood is known for its gorgeous trees, but with that beauty comes a boatload of problems.

“Monday morning it was crazy we woke up we came outside and about every five minutes we saw a tree branch fall,” Bradley Katzmarzyk said.

Days, after Louisiana was hit by a massive winter storm trees, are still intertwined in power lines, some falling on roofs and the street.

“We’re used to the problems that come with the trees, but it’s been pretty rough,” Amy Nolan said.

Nolan has been living here for 20 years, and she says whenever severe weather hits, tree limbs come tumbling down on the power lines leaving the neighborhood in darkness.

“It’s been really hard with as cold as it’s been,” Nolan said.

Throughout the capital city, crews have been working and picking up debris in hopes of power being restored soon. Katzmarzyk says it’s time to ax some of the trees.

“I think that if crews came through and checked on trees that were at more risk frequently, then it wouldn’t be as bad when we had bad weather,” Katzmarzyk said.

David Freese from Entergy says trees get cut annually, and nothing could prepare them for Monday’s unprecedented weather.

“The ice can add significant weight to both tree limbs and power lines and cause them to break and fall to the ground,” Freese said.

Thousands of people are still without power. Freese says crews are working as hard and fast as they can.

The City-Parish provided details about how the process is going:

Republic Services began collecting woody waste Wednesday, February 17 as part of its regular services. Today the City-Parish activated DRC Emergency Services to first assist in trimming hanging tree limbs that are affecting our roadways, before transitioning to collecting storm debris.

In addition, the Department of Maintence continues its efforts to clear trees from roadways, after which it will assist in debris collection. The City-Parish received 192 calls through 311 since Monday for down trees or tree limbs affecting our roadways. The City-Parish is also working with utility companies to collect the debris they remove in their efforts to restore power.

Residents can expect to see storm debris collection taking place on their normal woody waste collection day. City-Parish anticipates debris removal to last four to six weeks.

If you enlist a professional company for tree service, they are responsible to haul off the debris.

Residents should cut their tree debris into 6-foot lengths and stack it at the right of way for collection. Collection for white goods and trash should be kept in separate piles.

If you have debris that needs to be picked up, the City-Parish asks that you do not stack tree debris:

  • In the ditch
  • Under power lines
  • Around utility poles
  • In the roadway
  • With white goods or trash
  • In front of mailboxes, water meters, fire hydrants or other utilities
  • Inside your garbage or recyclable bin

“Now that power is being restored, our residents are eager to clean up the debris left behind. This winter storm has devastated a large portion of the Southern United States, creating competition for debris removal resources throughout our region. For that reason, I have asked that we start immediately with debris collection, using all available resources to complete our cleanup effort as quickly and efficiently as possible,” said Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome.


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