One of the many facilities damaged Hurricane Katrina was the water treatment plant in Port Sulphur, La. With the help of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), additional funds have now been obligated to return this vital service to the community.
The Port Sulphur plant sustained extensive wind, rain and saltwater damage. The roof, siding and doors were all damaged, and the storm even caused windows to blow out of the building. All of the lighting, electrical and filtration systems were damaged. Nearly everything in the facility must be repaired or replaced.
“We are very pleased that Plaquemines Parish is receiving this FEMA assistance to provide a higher level of safety and reliability to the Port Sulphur water plant. Although the Port Sulphur water plant has been in operation and has been producing water in compliance with state and federal guidelines, the operators have been constantly fixing the damaged electrical circuits and operating the plant in manual mode. These upgrades will replace pumps, relocate electrical components to a higher elevation and enhance the system redundancy,” said Clyde Carlson, district engineer with the Office of Public Health in the Safe Drinking Water Program.
Located on Highway 23 in Plaquemines Parish, the Port Sulphur water treatment plant consists of several buildings on its site. With the $1.5 million recently obligated by FEMA, Plaquemines Parish will now be reimbursed for work to the plant that includes new air conditioning units, pumps and motors, and water compressors, as well as new ceilings, roll-up doors, walls and windows. In addition, the funds cover new hurricane shutters and improvements to the various electrical components.
The Public Assistance program works with state and local officials to fund recovery measures and the rebuilding of government and certain private nonprofit organizations’ buildings and recreation centers, as well as roads, bridges and water and sewer plants. In order for the process to be successful, federal, state and local partners coordinate to draw up project plans, fund these projects and oversee their completion.