Jennings residents ask Jeff Davis Police Jury for flood help

JENNINGS — Residents want something done about flooding on their road just north of Jennings after being flooded twice in a year.

Annette and Jay Dobson and Brett Crochet were among several people living along the Grand Marais who are asking the Jeff Davis Parish Police Jury for help after being turned away by the drainage broad.

“In August of 2016 my home had water damage due to back-water intrusion and flooding, causing over $30,000 in damage,” Annette Dobson said. “At that time we experienced nearly 16 inches of rain.”

The resident who lives across the street from the Dobsons has lived there 26 years and had never experience flooding until August, Police Jury President Donald Woods said.

The Dobsons experienced flooding again in May after receiving just over 6 inches of rain, based on National Weather Service estimates.

Over 200 sandbags were placed around the home to help prevent further flood damage.

Brett Crochet of Koll Road said he had 14 inches of water in his house and barn in August, causing about $130,000 in damage, and that he had no flood insurance. The home, which isn’t in a flood zone, flooded again in May, after repairs had been made.

When residents of Dama Landry and Koll roads approached the Grand Marais Drainage Board in May, they were told to go to the Police Jury for help, Annette Dobson said.

Jay Dobson said the drainage board told residents that it had cleaned everything out and that there was nothing it could do because the problems were caused by something farther south.

This week, the residents appeared before the Police Jury to ask for its help in keeping water off of their property and out of their homes.

“Regardless of the amount of rainfall, it is still an issue,” Annette Dobson said. “Historic flooding in August is one thing, but spring rains and experiencing the same level of water is totally different.”

The group presented police jurors with a handout showing water levels around their homes and roadways and pictures of what they say are problem areas around their homes.

The first drainage lateral is about 0.4 mile south of the Dobsons home.

Police Juror Wayne Fruge said he is working with the drainage board to help resolve the issue and clean the ditches.

He said he recently rode around the area for two hours with a member of the board looking at “some of the issues” and taking pictures.

Most of the problems are caused by trash and other debris blocking water flow, he said. Some of the problems are causing the water to bottleneck farther south of the drainage district, including areas along the interstate, he said.

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