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WX UPDATE 8pm 8-29-08 Hurricane Gustav Causes Chaos: "La. Prepares for Worst- Prays for Best"
Saturday, Aug 30, 2008 1:17am
SHREVEPORT, LA (By: Tom Pace, Executive Editor, Talk of the Town) BREAKING: HURRICANE UPDATE 8pm 8-29-08 Now a full-blown hurricane, packing 80 mph winds, Gustav seems to have the Louisiana coast squarely in its sights, and the latest reports predict the possiblity of a Category 4 hurricane when it makes landfall. 

"We're planning for the worst, and praying for the best," said Sandy Davis, Director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness and Homeland Security for Northwest Louisiana.

According to the Weather Channel, as of 7 p.m. CDT, the center of Gustav was centered about 90 miles east of Grand Cayman, and moving a little faster in a west-northwest direction near 11 mph and, is expected to strengthen overnight into Saturday morning. View the Gustav Tracker.

Click here to listen as Terri Brock from CenterPoint 2-1-1, as she tells Tom Pace on "The Talk of the Town"  that the agency needs 40 computer-skilled volunteers to help man the 24/7 phone lines for evacuee information. The statewide 2-1-1 system also serves as a clearing house to the area faith-based organizations assisting in evacuee shelters.  (www.centerpt.org)

As a result, Governor Bobby Jindal has directed that Shreveport-Bossier and northwest Louisiana be named as primary evacuation areas for those south Louisiana residents who may be forced to to abandon their homes tomorrow.  That's the same role played by the cities in this area three years ago when Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans. 

During morning and afternoon press conferences, Mayors Glover and Walker, along with Davis, Shreveport Police Chief Henry Whitehorn, Bossier Fire Chief Sammy Halphen, and others briefed the media and faith-based organizations about the emergency plans being formalized during the next 48-72 hours. 

Davis said that Gustav appears to be on a track making landfall near the south-central part of the Louisiana sometime Monday or Tuesday morning.  

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