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Louisiana governor declares state of emergency ahead of hurricane

Louisiana governor declares state of emergency ahead of hurricane
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Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) has declared a state of emergency ahead of the landfall of Hurricane Harvey, which is expected to hit the state late Friday or early Saturday.

“All arms of the state’s emergency preparedness and response apparatus are planning for the serious threat posed by Hurricane Harvey, and we are calling on all Louisianans throughout the state to do so as well,” Edwards said in a statement.

“I will continue to direct all of the necessary resources to preparing for the worst as we all pray for the best, but rest assured, state and local officials are working around the clock to monitor and respond to this potentially dangerous situation," Edwards said.

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Harvey, which was upgraded from a tropical storm Thursday afternoon, is expected to make landfall as a category 3 hurricane, according to the National Weather Service. It is expected to be the largest hurricane to hit the region since Hurricane Bret made landfall in the area in 1999.

“Harvey is expected to be a major hurricane at landfall, bringing life-threatening storm surge, rainfall, and wind hazards to portions of the Texas coast,” said the National Hurricane Center.

Louisiana becomes the second state to declare a state of emergency over the impending storm. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) made a similar decision for multiple counties on Wednesday afternoon.

“Texans believe in taking action and always being prepared in the event of an emergency,” Abbott said on Wednesday. “That is why I am taking every precaution prior to Tropical Depression Harvey making landfall."

"Preemptively declaring a state of disaster will allow Texas to quickly deploy resources for the emergency response effort in anticipation of the storm's hazardous conditions," he said.

The White House on Thursday said President Trump is monitoring the progress of the hurricane in the event that federal resources are also needed.