NEW ORLEANS – What started as a few thunderstorms quickly blew out of proportion and became a Category 4 hurricane in a matter of three days. At 150 mph, Hurricane Ida tied at the fifth-strongest hurricane to have ever struck the U.S. It has already caused power outage all across the New Orleans and is expected to inflict catastrophic damage to infrastructure and businesses in the state.
While officials have informed the residents of New Orleans to evacuate, the fast approaching massive hurricane left them no time to organise a mandatory evacuation for the entire city. Mayor Latoya Cantrell has addressed the people and said, “This is a very dangerous and a very real situation. This is the time, heed all warnings, ensure that you shelter in place, you hunker down,”. Those who were still in the city by Sunday August 29, had to find a safe as possible place to wait out the storm.
Since Hurricane Katrina, the state has made improvements to their levee system to cushion the effects of flooding caused by hurricanes and it has been protecting the city over the years after Katrina. Ramsey Green, deputy chief administrative officer for infrastructure, is very concerned about the strength of Hurricane Ida and said that “if we see 10 to 20 inches of rain over an abbreviated period of time, we will see flooding”.
According to the Associated Press, “The Interstate 10 corridor between New Orleans and Baton Rouge is a critical hub of the nation’s petrochemical industry, lined with oil refineries, natural gas terminals and chemical manufacturing plants. Entergy, Louisiana’s major electricity provider, operates two nuclear power plants along the Mississippi River.”. These are all in the path of Hurricane Ida.
Amidst the Hurricane Ida situation while still dealing with rising numbers of COVID-19 cases, The President of the United States, Joe Biden, has said, “if you have to move to a shelter, make sure you wear a mask and try to keep some distance,”.
For more information, check out footage of Hurricane Ida and reports from the ground reported by ABC News here: