CAMERON PARISH, La. — Right now people in Cameron Parish, Louisiana are in a frightening familiar place, watching and waiting on a storm.

There’s a voluntary evacuation listed for communities south of the Intercoastal, a place that has suffered in historic hurricanes.

Lafourche Parish officials have issued a mandatory evacuation below the Leon Theriot Lock in Golden Meadow for 6:00 a.m. Friday, July 12, for the area below the lock. With that, GLPC anticipates moving to GLPC Storm Phase IV: Mandatory Evacuation for Port Fourchon at that time.

Many are packed and ready to evacuate in Cameron Parish, but are waiting to see whether Barry keeps going east or makes an all too familiar turn toward Cameron Parish.

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“We have north winds right now so I went fishing this morning, crabbin," Richard Dahlen of Cameron Parish said.

A hopeful start of the day for Dahlen is the only way to handle life in Cameron Parish as a storm begins to brew in the gulf.

Audrey, Rita and Ike are names that come with awful memories here.

“We’re just going to watch it make sure it’s ok, I don’t think it’s going to get too bad and I’m trying to pay this place off I got to make the money while I can," restaurant owner Tressie Smith said. 

She owns Anchors Away restaurant and said she is staying put for now. 

"If it seems like it’s going to get closer to us then we’re getting out of here," Smith said.
When asked if she would be taking a risk, Smith said "no," because "we know what it can do, we know what can happen." 

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Her father survived Audrey, hundreds of others didn’t.

Infrastructure is built on stilts since Rita.

Those who didn’t have to work today prepared in case a mandatory evacuation is called.

Postal carrier Jodie Hebert kept her rounds.

She said she doesn't yet know if she'll evacuate. 

"Right now, they didn't call a mandatory evacuation so I'll be delivering the mail tomorrow as far as I know," Hebert said. 

 Dahlen said they're continuing to watch the weather. 

"We'll evacuate if it comes our way. The storm surge, high water will get you," Dahlen said. 

Emergency managers said while the predictions have Barry heading further east, they do not expect to withdraw the volunteer evacuation order. They know just how quickly things can turn.  

Lesley Clark lives in Cameron Parish. 

"Our neighbor lives downs the street and he also plans to stay at this time," Clark said. 

She said Rita is the storm that really made an impact.

Clark's been preparing, buying extra water and food,

She's said she's relieved to know the storm made more of a turn, toward central Louisiana.

"Unless this thing takes a hard turn to the west, we're going to be here, Clark said. "My home is high enough in the air where I'll be okay."