Gov. Edwards Requests Major Disaster Declaration from President Biden Due to Severe Weather

Gov. Edwards Requests Major Disaster Declaration from President Biden Due to Severe Weather, Flash Flooding in Five Parishes in Louisiana

BATON ROUGE — Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards requested that President Joseph. R. Biden declare a federal disaster declaration for Louisiana following severe weather and flash flooding earlier in May, which caused damage to at least 2,000 homes. The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness anticipates that damage levels exceed the actual damage reported.

Gov. Edwards’ request is for FEMA Individual Assistance for five parishes – Ascension, Calcasieu, East Baton Rouge, Iberville and Lafayette. Individual Assistance includes aid from FEMA related to housing and other needs. The Governor also requested Small Business Administration assistance and Hazard Mitigation Grant Program funding statewide. The Governor declared a state of emergency for this disaster on May 17, 2021.

“The severe weather that quickly affected Louisiana in mid-May caused flash flooding and at least one tornado. Five people died, thousands were without power and many businesses and schools were forced to close,” Gov. Edwards said. “In Calcasieu parish, many people who were impacted in this severe weather also faced damage from Hurricanes Laura and Delta last year, which is heartbreaking. Areas in Southeast Louisiana that flooded had similarly been affected in 2016 during historic flooding in Louisiana. We are coming off of an incredibly active hurricane season, an ongoing pandemic and facing down the next hurricane season in just a few days. I am hopeful the President will grant this disaster declaration to assist our people with their rebuilding process.”

Click here to view the Governor’s request.

In total, 1,729 houses were validated damaged from the severe weather, including 5 that were reported as destroyed, 640 suffering major damage and 1,084 homes having minor damage. Louisiana collected reports from the public via a self-report process at