BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD) – Days after Hurricane Ida, traffic is starting to pick up, and city officials are now asking the general public to stay off the roads unless they absolutely have to.
Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome said she understands the roads are busy with people looking for resources, but she’s asking citizens to be patient.
“Entergy is telling us they’re guardedly optimistic and that by this time next week all of their customers should be up and running,” said Mayor Broome.
With over 100 traffic lights down, power outages are affecting the roads, BRPD Information Officer L’Jean McKneely said the congestion is slowing down relief efforts.
“Entergy and the first responders are trying to get to everywhere in haste, so we’re trying to make sure that the roadways are as clear as possible, “said McKneely.
According to BRPD, calls to 911 since Hurricane Ida have almost doubled while roads are already busy. Baton Rouge is also currently a staging area for harder hit communities, Mayor Broome says relief is going to have to be a team effort.
“The more people stay at home and off the roadways, the quicker we can get things up and running,” said Mayor Broome.
“We have service vehicles and we have energy trucks, those companies that are coming out of town to assist Louisiana in getting the power back on, ” said McKneely.
According to Mayor Broome, 74% of customers in East Baton Rouge were without power, now it’s down to 43%.
For those who find themselves on the busy roads during this time, McKneely said to abide by the rules of the road.
“If you come up to a traffic light that’s not working you treat it as a four-way stop, one side goes before the other, and just be respectful,” said McKneely.