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ST. BERNARD PARISH ANTICIPATES CALLING MANDATORY EVACUATION SOME TIME SATURDAY, AUG. 30 FOR GUSTAV

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Parish assisted evacuation for residents with special and medical needs begins Friday, Aug. 29

St. Bernard Parish President Craig P. Taffaro Jr. said Thursday night he anticipates calling a mandatory, parish-wide evacuation for all residents some time Saturday, Aug. 30, in anticipation of Tropical Storm Gustav.

Evacuation for residents with special and medical needs, who have registered with the parish, will begin Friday, Aug. 29 by appointment. Any special needs residents must register before midnight tonight by calling 504-278-1593.

Those who are not capable of self-evacuation and who need to use state-provided transportation will begin the evacuation process Saturday from 6 a.m. to noon.

Once the mandatory evacuation is in effect, the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff's Office will enforce a 24-hour curfew where residents will not be allowed to leave their homes and no one will be allowed to enter the parish, said Chief Deputy James Pohlmann. The Sheriff's Office will begin monitoring the neighborhoods with increased patrols assisted by the National Guard to protect property. The parish prison will be closed, and anyone arrested will be taken directly to Angola Prison.

The Katrina Commemorative event at Shell Beach scheduled for Friday at 11 a.m. has been cancelled, but the 7:30 a.m. Mass at Our Lady of Prompt Succor Church and the 8:30 a.m. Day of Reflection breakfast at Chalmette High School are still scheduled.

St. Bernard Parish public schools, Our Lady of Prompt Succor and Lynn Oaks School will remain open Friday, but there will be no after-school activities and no after-school care. The jamboree football games at Chalmette High School have been cancelled.

Boaters should monitor media updates to learn when the locks at Bayous Dupre and Bienvenue will be closed.

Residents who cannot afford to evacuate on their own and will need transportation to a state-run shelter should show up at one of the designated pick-up points along the St. Bernard Urban Rapid Transit Evacuation Route.

There are six pick-up points along Judge Perez Drive. A SBURT bus will come by every 30 minutes Saturday from 6 a.m. to noon to pick up residents who lack personal transportation or who cannot self-evacuate. They will be brought to the staging area where they will be registered and placed on state busses to be taken to state-run shelters.

Residents who need assistance evacuating should remember to medicines and prescriptions in their original bottles or packages and bring identification and important papers. Residents will be allowed only one small carry-on bag per person, no more than 45-inch total dimensions. Pet carriers, purses and diaper bags will not count as your one carry-on bag. Pets must be in pet carriers in order to be evacuated. Vehicles may be left at the pick-up points below.

The pick up points are:

• Celebration Church, 7500 W. Judge Perez Drive in Arabi
• Our Lady of Prompt Succor Church, 2320 Paris Road in Chalmette.
• Chalmette High School, 1100 E. Judge Perez Drive in Chalmette.
• Corinne Missionary Baptist Church, 5620 E. Judge Perez Drive in Violet
• Beauregard Middle School, 1201 Bayou Road in St. Bernard
• Fanz Mobile Home Park, 2100 West Fanz in St. Bernard

Tune to the local media for information. Also, St. Bernard Parish Government will be issuing updates on its website at www.sbpg.net, on its cable access station at channel 76 for Cox Communications customers and on its emergency communications radio station at 1680-AM.

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