Nine Louisiana flood victims return to their homes | Atmos Energy
Neighborhood street lined with houses and an American flag.

Nine Louisiana flood victims return to their homes

May 24, 2017

In late August 2016, as much as 32 inches of rain in a 48-hour period saturated south Louisiana. The homes of 15 employees were either partially or severely damaged. With the help of company-sponsored fundraising and employee donations, nine are now back in their homes.

Initially, all affected employees were provided with cleaning supplies, food, drinks and Visa gift cards. Teams of employees soon fanned out to help people remove sheetrock, carpet, flooring, furniture and appliances. Employees also cooked meals for impacted employees and first responders, and Atmos Energy provided monetary contributions to agencies supporting emergency response efforts.

“Employees were eligible to apply for grants through the Employee 1st account, which we set up through the Baton Rouge Area Foundation,” says HR Vice President David Hebert. “Employees that applied received additional financial help to handle expenses not covered by insurance and/or FEMA. Total financial support for homeowners that applied was around $4,000 each.”

Louis Lambert and his wife, Kristy, are happy to be back in their Prairieville, La., home. The house was flooded with a foot of water back in August.

“Through EmpComs, employees from throughout Atmos Energy were given the opportunity to contribute,” added HR Senior Vice President Matt Robbins. “This money was used for the grants. Once again, our employees rallied to support their coworkers and the communities we serve during difficult times.”

Crew Leader Louis Lambert, who received a foot of water in his house in Prairieville, moved back in about seven weeks ago. A team from Metairie who had been through Hurricane Katrina helped him with cleaning and rebuilding. 

“This is the first time we have experienced anything like this, and we didn’t know where to start,” Lambert said. “These guys came in here and said, ‘We have been through this. It looks bad now but everything is going to be okay.’ That was so comforting for me and my wife. These guys are a reflection of our company: first class. And since we didn’t have content coverage on our insurance, the money the company provided helped buy new furniture.”

Senior Service Technician Dempsey Lambert took six inches of water in his Prairieville home. To prevent this from happening again, it had to be raised eight inches (the home is on 24-inch brick pillars).

“In doing that, not only did we have to replace the floors but all the sheet rock,” he says. “After the initial hit back in August, you wonder, is anybody coming? Well, employees came a-running. Five months later, we are back in our home. We are blessed people to be working for Atmos Energy. Food, financial help, physical help. I am so thankful this company is looking out for us.”