The media is still bitter about not having anyone in New Orleans for Katrina. They have pretty much packed up and gone home. The latest statistic I heard on the radio today was that there was more power outages from Gustav than from Katrina. I don't think the media likes the fact that New Orleans was spared and has refused to cover Baton Rouge adequately. I've talked to many people outside the state who are unaware that 90% of Baton Rouge does not have power. Today I learned that Rapides Parish - Alexandria is flooding and many areas do not have power. I guess we'll have to go back to being unprepared to get the proper attention. They are still focusing on New Orleans as if nothing else matters. Don't get me wrong, Katrina forever changed the crescent city but Baton Rouge, Terrebonne, Lafourche, etc. deserve their coverage. I'm going to pay a few people to dig a moat around their house and get on the roofs. A picture sent in to CNN should get Anderson Cooper out here.
The power situation is dismal. Demco and Entergy have up to the minute coverage of their customers without power. Demco has a nice map at http://demco.maps.sienatech.com/ and Entergy has more of the corporate bs site at http://www.entergy.com/ . Around town earlier today I was shocked at the lack of progress. Still not a light in Prairieville. I went into Gonzales and found the corner of Airline and Burnside lit up but nowhere else. There is still nothing on Seigen Lane that has power except the traffic light at Airline Highway. I know they have a plan, but it isn't obvious to the casual observer. College Drive seems to have power close to the Interstate. That will make the Ruth's and Ninfa's crowds happy (both are now open). The estimates are 7-14 days for many areas.
Traffic is a beast. All of the lights out causes a 20 minute drive to be an hour. It is unbelievable how long it takes to use the city streets. The gas lines seemed much shorter today and there were a few more stations carrying fuel. Still not much opened. Other than a handful of hardware stores, the majority of places are closed. I'm sure it is the lack of power but it is causing the hording mentality. I think many of the people shopping for food are shopping because there are so few places open.
Curfews. I mentioned this briefly but are we living in Russia? There is a strict 8:00pm to 6:00am curfew in Baton Rouge. It's 10:00pm to 6:00am in Ascension Parish. I understand they don't want people driving around at night because it isn't safe but if you are going to get gas, I think it is a valid excuse. Not according to the Baton Rouge Mayor and others. Work or medical emergency are about the only excuses they will accept. I haven't been able to find anyone who has been pulled over but I have talked to several people who have seen people pulled over.