Five DuPont plant sites and their employees were impacted by Hurricane Isaac, which touched down in the north Gulf Coast in late August. The Category 1 hurricane dumped massive amounts of rain in Alabama, Mississippi and southeast Louisiana and caught many residents off guard with swift rising water.
The U.S. sites, which included Mobile, Pascagoula, DeLisle, Pontchartrain and Burnside, sustained minor or no damage, and no employees were injured because of advanced safety preparations.
Employees living in and around LaPlace, La., located 20 miles northwest of New Orleans, sustained significant water damage to their homes, endured several days with no electricity and drinking water, and problems traveling on local roads due to flooding.
Pontchartrain employee Alvin Gaubert herded his wife and son into a waiting boat parked next to his front porch as the tide filled his home in LaPlace.
“As the storm was moving into Louisiana, I noticed water flowing in the street in front of my home,” said Alvin. “A few minutes later I looked again and the water was at my front door. I checked the back of the house and watched a wave crash through my fence.”
Although most levees rebuilt following Hurricane Katrina in 2005 were not breached, water quickly spilled over embankments, resulting in mass flooding throughout the region.
“As we returned to the site and resumed plant operations, our employees immediately recognized a need to assist those employees most impacted by the storm,” said Walter Glenn, Pontchartrain site manager. “They volunteered their time to help safely remove debris and repair the homes damaged by Isaac. It’s an excellent example of neighbor-helping-neighbor during times of crisis.”