Sunday, September 25, 2005

Search-and-rescue to resume Sunday

Emergency official: Up to 1,000 may be trapped in parish
ABBEVILLE, Louisiana:As many as 1,000 people who did not follow mandatory evacuation orders in one southwestern Louisiana parish may need to be rescued, an emergency management official said Saturday.
But the mission to save them was to resume Sunday morning, after Gov. Kathleen Blanco called off the efforts amid approaching nightfall, threats of more flooding and 30 mph winds on Vermilion Bay and Vermilion River.
"We can't put the rescuers at risk, because then they become the victims," she said.The rescuers, who traveled in several hundred boats, planned to go out again starting at 7 a.m. (8 a.m. ET).The governor said that Gen. Robert LeBlanc, the director of Vermilion Parish's Emergency Operations Center, had told her that 250 people had been rescued, but perhaps four times that number needed help.The National Weather Service said floodwater will continue to rise Sunday. LeBlanc said he hoped to get everybody out in two days, if the wind dies down.


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