After months of drought and lack of rainfall across the South and Midwest, the flow of the Mississippi River has not been powerful enough to prevent denser saltwater from moving inland and upriver.
Numerous communities in southeastern Louisiana depend on the river as their primary source of fresh water. These communities braced for water to become undrinkable and even potential plumbing issues due to salt buildup in water systems.
In Plaquemines Parish, where the Mississippi meets the Gulf, residents have been dealing with water advisories since June. Parish officials have been making bottled water available for months with no end in site.
The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services Department for Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi purchased and sent 20 250-gallon containers for potable water as well as smaller containers for easier distribution, totaling over 5,000 gallons to the New Orleans Area Command.
From there, the water can be distributed to Plaquemine and the other parishes in need. Additionally, The Salvation Army has a truckload and a half of palatized, bottled water – donated by nonprofit partners Baby2Baby and Midwest Food Bank – on standby should the state request further support.
“Water is one of our most basic necessities, and access to clean water is something we can take for granted,” said William Trueblood, Emergency Services Director for the Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi Division. “The Salvation Army is committed to helping the people in Louisiana as long as we have the resources.”