With 2020’s tumultuous hurricane season over, citizens in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and the surrounding areas have been ready to work towards fully recovering from the devastation resulting from Hurricanes Laura and Delta in August. As Hurricane Laura grew from a Category 3 to a Category 4 hurricane, the National Hurricane Center warned residents that the storm surge could be up to 20 feet before it made landfall. Even before a hurricane makes landfall, the rain, wind, storm surge, and tornadoes may accompany the hurricane, which can enhance the destruction.
Federal Hurricane Relief Funds Approved
Following the aftermath of two back-to-back storms and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Louisiana business owners were left with little recourse as their businesses remained inoperable. While Lake Charles struggled to recover, insurers failed to speedily respond to property damage claims. FEMA recently approved over $1 billion in federal disaster assistance, long-term disaster loans, and flood insurance claims to assist. Additionally, the Small Business Administration (SBA) approved $627 million in long-term, low-interest loans in order to cover the cost of local small business repairs, as well as for the loss of essential personal property and housing. FEMA’s Public Assistance Program has already allocated $66.7 million in damage assistance to state and local government entities and to specific nonprofits for emergency protective measures, debris removal, and the rebuilding of parks and other recreational facilities.
The Public Assistance Program covers at least 75% of the costs for emergency and protective measures like sandbagging, repairing bridges and roads, raising downed power lines, and removing debris. Despite these efforts, the state has reported that roughly 40% of the St. Landry Parish area is still inundated with debris from the two storms.
Hurricane Insurance Claims Attorneys
Business owners in Lake Charles, Louisiana and the surrounding areas have arguably faced some of the worst storm damage during the deadly, ongoing pandemic. Furthermore, relief may not easily be found by filing insurance claims to recoup the cost of damage.
Insurance companies are unfortunately often much more interested in making money than they are in assisting local business owners who have timely paid their premiums and are struggling to keep their doors open. At Raizner Law, our experienced insurance attorneys have successfully handled thousands of hurricane-related insurance claims. If you or someone you know owns a business that has suffered property damage as a result of Hurricane Laura or Hurricane Delta (or both), contact our office today to see how we can help.