BEHIND THE SCENES: How Caddo Parish handles emergencies, natural disasters

BEHIND THE SCENES: How Caddo Parish handles emergencies, natural disasters
Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in Caddo Parish (Source: Destinee Patterson)

SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - A week ago, the ArkLaTex was covered in snow and ice, weathering a historic winter storm.

KSLA News 12′s Destinee Patterson toured the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in Caddo Parish to get a look at what the parish does during emergency situations.

“Of course, it gets handled on the street,” Caddo Parish Sheriff Steve Prator said. “But really, the resources and everything else comes from here.”

Prator also serves as the director of homeland security and emergency preparedness. He said it is a team effort to make sure people in the community get what they need.

“Everyone from the city marshals, Shreveport fire & police, Shreveport administration, the sheriff’s office, fire marshals, national guard” spends time in the EOC. A representative from each agency is in the center 24 hours a day during emergency situations.

“If there’s an emergency or a quick need comes in, any of these folks that are in contact with their people on the street, they will announce the need. Another person will say, ‘I can fill that.’ Then, we’ll all rush to that need and get it handled,” Prator explained.

With those same agencies and others, Prator hosts multiple meetings throughout the day to keep them informed.

Crises also require the help of the state.

“Much like you see individuals here in the physical, the state of Louisiana operates a web-based [emergency operation center],” said Deputy Director OHSEP, Robert Jump. “It’s for every parish to be able to reach them for resource needs.”

The main resource need for Caddo Parish is water.

“We’ve coordinated hundreds of thousands of gallons of bulk water - potable and non-potable,” Prator said.

BEHIND THE SCENES: How Caddo operations center handles emergencies

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