LSU on Ice

LSU Nicholson Gateway apartments sit Monday, Feb. 15, 2021 during the winter weather mix on Nicholson Drive in Baton Rouge, La.

The University announced in an email Tuesday afternoon that LSU will remain closed Feb. 17 "due to the amount of ice still on streets and bridges, power outages in the area, and the forecast of temperatures to remain below freezing."

After a winter storm brought low temperatures and ice to Baton Rouge, some students on campus suffered power outages on Feb. 15. 

Media Relations Director Ernie Ballard said Nicholson Gateway experienced some power outages Monday, as well as some Greek houses. After the University was made aware that Entergy may not return power until later Monday night, students living in Greek houses had the option to move into an on-campus residence hall that had power.

Ballard said some Greek organizations’ housing corporations may have had generators brought in Monday as well. The buildings impacted by the power outage are the ones on Entergy’s grid.

Psychology senior Payton Silburn lives in Nicholson Gateway and said his apartment lost power Monday night. 

"My apartment was really cold," Silburn said.

According to an email sent to Nicholson Gateway residents, Res Life is working with Entergy and the facilities team to reach a solution about the power outages. Res Life suggested that residents submit a work order in the housing portal if they are experiencing power or heating outages.

"This simple step helps our team identify where the problems are since all apartments are not experiencing the same levels of outage," the email read.

Psychology junior Eryn Lowe also resides in Nicholson Gateway and said that she was forced to relocate to her friend's house due to the problems persisting at her apartment. 

“I wasn’t able to get an internet connection in my bedroom, and my roommate took a shower and said we had no hot water," Lowe said. "I had to leave my apartment to go to my friend's house, but some students have nowhere to go."  

At around 5 p.m. Tuesday evening, LSU Housing sent an email to Nicholson Gateway residents about overnight housing options.

"We are not confident power will be completely and consistently restored to all of Nicholson Gateway before dusk," the email read.

The email encouraged residents to seek an alternate housing option for Tuesday evening. LSU Housing offered temporary on-campus housing options for residents that residents could apply for before 6:30 p.m. Tuesday night through a form.

"If you opt to remain in Nicholson Gateway Apartments, please prepare as if you will not have power and heat overnight," the email read. "Stock up on blankets and warm clothes."

Lowe noticed that although Nicholson Gateway was out of power, Tiger Stadium was still fully illuminated. 

"Tiger Stadium gets to receive power and be lit up while students are freezing," Lowe said. 

Ballard said Tiger Stadium is on "campus power" while Nicholson Gateway is on Entergy's grid, so "it's two separate power sources."

At least one tree is down on campus, according to Ballard.

Executive Director of Facility Services Tammy Millican said that there was very little damage to facilities to campus, but there is still work to be done.

"The biggest issues our staff are addressing at this time is removal of downed branches and ensuring that there are no slip hazards at building entrances," Millican said. 

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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