Gov. Bobby Jindal has declared a statewide public health emergency to let government workers enter private property to assess and remove nuisance debris from Hurricane Isaac that poses a health hazard.
His statement Monday notes that widespread flooding continues in some areas, the state has issued more than 200 water boil advisories and has lost more than 40 percent of the electrical power statewide for an extended period.
It is possible that oil and oily material present in the environment as a result of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill will wash up on beaches, barrier islands, marshes, and other areas along Louisiana's coast during and following severe weather events. Members of the public should not handle any oil or oily material, including tarballs, tar mats, or other oily debris.
State health officials confirm three more people have died from West Nile virus, bringing the total to nine so far this year.
The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals also said Friday that 53 new human cases of the virus have been confirmed and mark 145 reported infections so far in 2012 — the highest number of cases the state has seen in the past several years.
Louisiana Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain says none of the salmonella-tainted cantaloupes that recently killed two people and sickened 141 nationwide have been traced to Louisiana.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported the salmonella outbreak is linked to contaminated cantaloupe grown in southwestern Indiana. The outbreak comes a year after cantaloupes contaminated with listeria from Colorado killed at least 30 people and sickened 146.