Bayou Corne residents begin leaving homes due to sinkhole
Bayou Corne, LA (NBC33) — Duane Bier built his home on Bayou Corne with his own hands. He thought the house would be a place for him to retire. He chose life on the bayou because of its beautiful scenery. Now his quiet community is marred from the aftermath of a giant sinkhole. Bier and his wife decided it's time to pack up and move.
"I get so disgusted I could pinch off heads," Bier exclaimed.
150 households in Bayou Corne are under a mandatory evacuation. Assumption Parish emergency officials say people won't get to go home until they figure out all the facts.
"The experts they don't want to touch on that. They say well I don't know. We don't know. There is a whole lot of we don't know," Bier retorted.
After almost four months of living in fear the wait is taking its toll on residents.
"When you get my age you are not supposed to be under stress," Bier said. "You are supposed to be retired. You are supposed to be relaxing. "
Many homes along highway 70 are now empty. People come in during the day and leave at night for fear something could happen. Neighbors who live across the bayou or even just across the street have to drive miles to be able to see each other.
"It's going down hill. There is just too many people gone. There is too many that I've talked to who are like me they are leaving they are not coming back," according to Bier.
"I feel like it's not going to be home anymore," Cathy Simoneaux, Bayou Corne homeowner, said. "I feel like a nomad all of a sudden. I don't know
where I am going to go, and what's going to happen."
Cathy Simoneaux and her husband spend the night at a camper trailer in Pierre Part down the road from their home Bayou Corne.
"You end up feeling like you are caged," cried Simoneaux. "At home you can find your spot. If you need to find your space to be alone. You can't do that in a camper."
Simoneaux said it's been one frustration after another after since the sinkhole formed. Now she's got to figure out what to do with her home.
"I don't know if any of us will ever feel safe again moving back. How would we have a guarantee. How would we have any kind of guarantee that it would be safe that this would never happen again," explained Simoneaux.
The fall out from the sinkhole could end up costing homeowners. Bier and Simoneaux said their property value may not recover.
"Yeah you can sell it for ten cents on the dollar," Bier said. "I just as soon let it sit here and rot."
They say they don't know what it will take to bring peace back to their community.
"I just don't want to be forgotten. I just feel like we are being forgotten," Simoneaux said.
"Like they say every dog has his day. Well God bless I need my day," Bier said.