Governor Barbour declares Day Of Prayer for tornado & rig victims - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Governor Barbour declares Day Of Prayer for tornado & rig victims

JACKSON, MS (WLOX) – Governor Haley Barbour proclaimed Tuesday, April 27 as a Day of Prayer to remember Mississippians who suffered losses in Saturday's severe weather and for those families who lost loved ones in last week's oil rig accident.

Ten people in Mississippi died in the storm. Federal and state emergency officials began surveying damage Monday in the counties hit hardest "The past few days have been tough for many Mississippi families," Governor Barbour said.

"We have lost loves ones to a tragic event off the Louisiana coast. Many of our communities are starting the recovery process after surviving the most severe storm we've seen since Hurricane Katrina. Once again, we will show the nation our strength of character and integrity as we help our neighbors recover from these tragedies."

Barbour says he hopes to have the state and federal preliminary damage assessments by Tuesday so he can submit them to President Obama by Wednesday. Mississippi Emergency Management Agency spokesman Greg Flynn said the survey team from FEMA would join state officials on a tour of the heaviest damaged areas. Governor Barbour has also ordered state flags to be flown at half staff April 27 through April 30 as part of a period of mourning.

Oil from the sunken drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico is oozing slowly toward the coast.  It poses a threat to sensitive marshes and beaches from Louisiana east to Florida. They could be fouled later this week if crews can't cut off an estimated 42,000 gallons a day escaping two leaks in a drilling pipe about 5,000 feet below the surface.

MDEQ's Earl Ethridge confirmed today that British Petroleum, (BP) has set up a command center on Old Highway 67 in Biloxi just in case the oil spill from the sunken rig threatens the barrier islands or the Mississippi coastline. 

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