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Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: Louisiana - Texas - EPA Response Update

Release Date: 10/3/2005
Contact Information: For more information contact the Office of External Affairs at (214) 665-2200.

     Household hazardous waste collection efforts continue in three parishes (St. Tammany, Jefferson, Lafourche Parishes).  Additional programs are planned for Orleans, Plaquemines and St. Bernard Parishes as soon as staging locations can be identified and approved by local officials.   Currently, 13 additional Parishes including Beauregard, Cameron, Vermillion, Calcasieu, Jefferson Davis, Iberia, Lafayette, Assumption, Terrebonne, Acadia, St. Mary, St. James, and St. Charles are scheduled to create household collection programs.

     Teams collected sediment samples at 10 locations in St. Bernard Parish and six locations in lower Plaquemines Parish. Bacteriological analyses of individual private well water supplies in the Livingston area and drinking water from public water systems in Kinder have begun and will continue for several weeks. Teams collected five outfall water samples and recorded water quality readings at pump stations in Plaquemines Parish.

     Flood water was sampled in the lower 9th Ward in Orleans Parish and Orleans Parish canals as part of our on-going water quality assessment program.  EPA and Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals continue to inspect area drinking water systems.  Of the 1,591 public water supply systems damaged by hurricanes in Louisiana: 1,151 are operating without a boil water advisory; 186 are operating under boil water advisories; 82 are not operating, 13 remain closed, and additional information is needed from 159 systems.

     EPA and LDEQ completed 38 inspections of sites in southwest Louisiana.  Teams inspected 14 facilities, including wastewater treatment plants, in Tangipahoa and Lafourche parishes.  Underground storage tank teams conducted reconnaissance at 32 facilities.