Coverage for this event has ended.
The CEO-led Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council (ESCC) said late Monday that more than 25,000 workers from at least 32 states and the District of Columbia are mobilized to help restore power outages in Southern Louisiana and parts of Mississippi as a result of Hurricane Ida.
“Entities impacted by Hurricane Ida—including investor-owned electric companies, electric cooperatives, and public power utilities—and their mutual assistance partners are committed to restoring power safely and as quickly as possible, ESCC said in a statement.
“While damage assessments continue, crews are working to restore service in areas where it is safe to do so. Road closures, flooding, and other accessibility challenges are impacting the ability of crews to reach some areas.
”ESCC serves as the principal liaison between the federal government and the electric power industry on efforts to prepare for, and respond to, national-level disasters or threats to critical infrastructure.
The National Hurricane Center said Ida has weakened to a tropical depression.
The storm had maximum sustained winds of 35 mph as it moved over Mississippi.
Forecasters warned that the threat of heavy rainfall and flash flooding continued across the southeast, and would continue moving northeast.
President Biden on Monday said more than 5,000 National Guard members have been activated from Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas to support search and recovery efforts. He said FEMA has prepositioned “millions” of meals and liters of water and other resources in the immediate area.
“I've asked the Federal Aviation Administration to work today with Louisiana and Mississippi electric companies to authorize the use of surveillance drones to assess items, damage to energy infrastructure while ensuring those flights do not disrupt aerial search and rescue operations. And I've also asked the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security to immediately make available any satellite imagery that can assist in assessing the damage in your states and cities.”
Tropical Storm Ida was located over Mississippi about 20 miles west-southwest of Jackson at 1 p.m. CT, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The storm is moving northward near 9 mph and is forecast to pass over northeastern Mississippi tonight, across the Tennessee Valley on Tuesday and near the central Appalachians on Wednesday.
Ida's maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph with higher gusts and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles from the center.
The threat of heavy rainfall and flash flooding has been spreading over portions of Mississippi, Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle.
"A few tornadoes" are also possible through Monday night mainly across southeast Mississippi, southern Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle.
A Storm Surge Warning and Tropical Storm Warning continues from the mouth of the Pearl River to the Alabama-Florida state line.
Additional weakening is forecast during the next day or so, and Ida is expected to become a tropical depression by this afternoon.
In a news conference on Monday afternoon, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell told reporters that the city's "communications have been compromised."
"But, one thing that we also recognize is that we still have the ability to send text messages. AT&T and Entergy are doing everything that they can," she added.
Cantrell said that her office had been in direct contact with the organizations and note that they have boots on the ground.
In addition, the mayor said that it did not appear that the city needs a post-disaster evacuation at this time.
"As I mentioned, our people in our city -- our residents -- need to stay put. Again, power and communication are critical issues," she state.
"I'm proud of our people," Cantrell said later.
NOLA Ready, the city's emergency preparedness campaign managed by the Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness, tweeted Monday afternoon that there is a "complete lack of services available in #NOLA right now."
"If you have evacuated out of #NOLA, we request that you DO NOT RETURN until further notice," the agency wrote in an earlier Twitter post. "There is widespread debris, power remains out, and emergency services are working to respond to those still in the city. We will let you know when it is safe to come home."
Given the level of destruction wrought by Hurricane Ida, Louisiana is "going to have many more confirmed fatalities," Christina Stephens, a spokesperson for Gov. John Bel Edwards, said Monday.
The governor’s office explained damage to the power grid appeared “catastrophic.” Officials warned it could take weeks for power to be fully restored.
“For the most part, all of our levees performed extremely well -- especially the federal levees -- but at the end of the day, the storm surge, the rain, the wind all had devastating impacts,” the governor explained. “We have tremendous damage to homes and to businesses.”
More than 2,200 evacuees were staying in 41 shelters as of Monday morning, a number expected to rise as people were rescued or escaped flooded homes.
Stephens said Louisiana will work to move residents to hotels as soon as possible so that they can keep their distance from one another.
“This is a COVID nightmare,” she said. “We do anticipate that we could see some COVID spikes related to this.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Speaking in a late-night address posted to Twitter, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell instructed residents to remain sheltering in place and New Orleans Police Chief Shawn Ferguson urged the city to "be vigilant."
“It’s unsafe,” Cantrell said.
"Without power, that creates opportunity for some, and we will not tolerate that," Ferguson added. "We will implement our anti-looting deployment to ensure the safety of our citizens and ensure the safety of our citizens' property."
"And as the mayor also stated, because it is dark, because we are without power, we need to be vigilant," he added, noting that people who travel in an area and put themselves in danger are ultimately putting New Orleans public safety members in danger.
Messaging from the police department and New Orleans officials was similar on Monday morning.
"Now is not the time to leave your home," NOPD tweeted. "There is no power. Trees, limbs, and lines are down everywhere. It is not safe to leave your home right now. Please remain sheltered in place."
Rescue workers set out in hundreds of boats and helicopters to reach Louisianans trapped by floodwaters on Monday.
The heroic effort came as utility crews mobilized after then-Hurricane Ida knocked out a large portion of the state's electrical grid on Sunday.
One of the most powerful hurricanes ever to hit the U.S. mainland, Ida weakened into a tropical storm and the National Hurricane Center reported late Monday morning that it was located inland over southwestern Mississippi.
Authorities warned residents not to leave their homes.
"Now is not the time to leave your home. There is no power. Trees, limbs, and lines are down everywhere. It is not safe to leave your home right now," the New Orleans Police Department tweeted. "Please remain sheltered in place."
Ida was blamed for at least one death.
The Louisiana National Guard reported it had activated 4,900 Guard personnel and lined up 195 high-water vehicles, 73 rescue boats and 34 helicopters.
Local and state agencies said they were adding hundreds of more.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
In a Monday morning Twitter update, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell wrote that "power remains out," "911 remains out," there are "downed trees [and] power lines in roads and that emergency personnel are assessing damage from Hurricane Ida and responding to "incidents."
"Although severe weather has passed, continue to stay indoors, off roads & avoid hazards!" she urged.
Tropical Storm Ida is moving northward over southwestern Mississippi, the National Hurricane Center reported Monday.
Dangerous storm surge and flash flooding threats are reportedly continuing over portions of southeastern Louisiana, southern Mississippi and southern Alabama and a Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Grand Isle, La. to the Alabama-Florida state line, including Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas and metro New Orleans.
The agency also warned of a "few tornadoes" through Monday evening, "mainly across southeast Mississippi, southwest Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle."
At 7 a.m. local time, Ida was located by NOAA Doppler weather radars, satellite data and surface observations inland over Mississippi approximately 65 miles south-southwest of Jackson.
Ida's maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 45 mph, with higher gusts.
Moving northward near 8 mph, the storm is forecast to head through the Magnolia State and across the Tennessee Valley on Tuesday.
Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm on Sunday afternoon in Port Fourchon, Louisiana.
"As the sun comes out this morning, please remain where you are," Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards tweeted Monday. "#Ida has left many hazards across Louisiana including flooded roadways, debris & downed powerlines. Follow the instructions of local officials & continue to be safe."
"At first light, Troopers began damage and road assessments. Many routes are blocked and dangerous road conditions exist," the Louisiana State Police tweeted. "Avoid all unnecessary travel and remain tuned to local emergency information. Utilize http://511la.org for road conditions."
Images of Hurricane Ida's destruction in Louisiana on Monday were largely shrouded in darkness as power outages continued in the city of New Orleans and other parishes.
Officials promised to begin rescue efforts as the sun rose on Monday, after levees failed or were overtopped south of New Orleans.
More than a million customers in Louisiana and Mississippi remained without power on Monday, according to PowerOutage.US and utility company Entergy reported that the only power in New Orleans was coming from generators.
NOLA.com reported Monday that the 911 system was not working in Orleans and Jefferson parishes.
The first death from the monumental storm was reported by the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office.
"Shortly after 8:30 p.m. deputies received reports of a citizen possibly injured from a fallen tree at a residence off of Highway 621 in Prairieville. Deputies arrived on scene and confirmed that the victim is now deceased," they wrote in a Facebook post.
On Monday, the sheriff's office said there were 250 road closures due to downed trees or power lines.
In a tweet, the National Weather Service warned that even though winds and rain may have subsided, hazards still remain in the impacted areas.
They instructed residents take care near damaged buildings, be wary of power lines and avoid floodwaters.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
The National Hurricane Center warned that danger from Tropical Storm Ida would continue on Monday.
In an early morning update, the agency wrote that the storm -- then located about 95 miles south-southwest of Jackson, Mississippi -- would still bring dangerous storm surge, damaging winds and flash flooding to the Magnolia State and southeastern Louisiana.
There was also the possibility for a few tornadoes mainly across southeast Mississippi, southwest Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle.
Ida is projected to move northeastward and into the Tennessee Valley on Tuesday.
The storm's maximum sustained winds have decreased near 60 mph, with higher gusts.
Rainfall and storm surge, the hurricane center noted, has "resulted in catastrophic impacts along the southeast coast of Louisiana with life threatening flash flooding and significant riverine flooding continuing farther inland."
Southern Louisiana hospitals, already packed with coronavirus patients, were hit by a Category 4 Hurricane Ida on Sunday.
Lafourche Parish's Lady of the Sea General Hospital reported extensive damage to the facility's roof and the hospital's phone system was down.
“All patients and staff are fine at this time without injury; although, our hospital has sustained significant damage,” hospital CEO Karen Collins said in a message relayed via Facebook.
In an e-mail to The Associated Press, state health department spokeswoman Aly Neel said the hospital would evacuate their patients "once it is safe to do so."
About an hour's drive away, Thibodaux Regional Medical Center reported a partial generator failure from the storm.
While a spokesperson for the governor said the medical center had "not lost all critical power," some patients were reportedly moved to another part of the hospital.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards told The Associated Press on Sunday that more than 2,400 COVID-19 patients are in Louisiana hospitals.
Before Ida hit, he explained that evacuating the hospital was not an option because there weren't other places to send them to.
Dr. Jeff Elder, medical director for emergency management at LCMC Health, said the hospitals in the system have generator backup power and he noted that communication is between various levels of government and hospitals in the hospital system have gotten much better since Hurricane Katrina hit.
"We’ve learned a lot since 2005,” he said.
More than one million customers were left without power due to Hurricane Ida and the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office reported the first death related to the storm on Sunday night.
"Shortly after 8:30 p.m. deputies received reports of a citizen possibly injured from a fallen tree at a residence off of Highway 621 in Prairieville. Deputies arrived on scene and confirmed that the victim is now deceased," the department wrote in a Facebook post.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Ida, the powerful hurricane that was downgraded to a tropical storm early Monday, continued to pound Louisiana after leaving more than a million customers without power, the entire city of New Orleans in the dark and at least one person dead.
As of 4 a.m. local time, Ida was located about 95 miles south-southwest of Jackson, Mississippi, with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph -- down from 105 mph late Sunday, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC). The storm was moving north at 8 mph.
A hurricane warning has been replaced with a tropical storm warning from Grand Isle, Louisiana, to the Mouth of the Pearl River as well as Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and metropolitan New Orleans.
Dangerous storm surge, damaging winds, and flash flooding are still continuing over portions of southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi., according to the NHC.
As of early Monday, more than one million customers were without power in Louisiana, according to PowerOutage.US, which tracks nationwide outages. More than 43,000 customers also didn't have power in Mississippi.
On Sunday evening, the entire city of New Orleans was without power, according to city officials. Entergy New Orleans, the city's power supplier, said Ida’s intensity has caused catastrophic damage in its path, including a "load imbalance to the company’s transmission and generation."
The first death related to Ida was reported in Prairieville, Louisiana, according to the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office. The unidentified person was found dead following reports of a fallen tree on a home.
"Tonight, we have confirmed at least one death and sadly, we know there will be others. Thousands of our people are without power and there is untold damage to property across the impacted parishes," Gov. John Bel Edwards wrote in a statement late Sunday.
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Ida was downgraded to a tropical storm on Monday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).
As of 4 a.m. CDT, Ida was located about 95 miles south-southwest of Jackson, Mississippi, with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph -- down from 105 mph late Sunday, according to the NHC. The storm was moving north at 8 mph.
"Dangerous storm surge, damaging winds, and flash flooding continue over portions of southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi," the NHC added.
Winds from Hurricane Ida ripped off a portion of the roof at Lady of the Sea General Hospital in Galliano, Louisiana, on Sunday.
A video posted to Twitter appeared to show a large section of the roof pealing off. No injuries were reported by authorities.
WARNING: GRAPHIC LANGUAGE
Another video appeared to show part of a roof being torn off by winds at Ochsner health’s main campus.
Hurricane Ida was downgraded again to a Category 1 storm early Monday.
As of 1 a.m. CDT, Ida was located about 20 miles south-southwest of Greensburg, Louisiana, with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph -- down from 105 mph late Sunday, according to the NHC.
Ida had been downgraded to a Category 2 Hurricane late Sunday after making landfall on the coast of Louisiana earlier in the day as a powerful Category 4 storm.
A Hurricane Warning is still in effect for Morgan City, Louisiana, to the mouth of the Pearl River, as well as Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and Metropolitan New Orleans.
Dangerous storm surge, damaging winds, and flash flooding are continuing over portions of southeastern Louisiana, the NHC added.
There is significant concern of damaging winds across Louisiana in Montpelier, Independence, Hammond and Amite, according to a 1:45 a.m. update by the National Weather Service of New Orleans.
"This area is from the remnant eye wall. Winds of 90mph+ likely which will cause widespread damage heading form Kentwood, McComb and Osyka," NWS New Orleans tweeted.
Residents were told not to go outside "even to try and help people," according to the National Weather Service of New Orleans.
"It is still too dangerous. Yes we all want to help so badly but you will only put your life in danger as well. Everyone needs to still shelter in place. Please it is too dangerous outside and even worse in the dark," NWS New Orleans tweeted.
An evacuation order has been made by the Plaquemines Parish government following reports of an apparent levee issue.
People near the Alliance to Oakville Floodgate were asked to evacuate immediately after the failure.
"There has been a failure near Hwy 23 in Alliance," Plaquemines Parish wrote on Facebook. "Flood waters are heading northbound on Hwy 23 from Alliance."
There is a flash flood emergency, including Plaquemines Parish, until 5:45 a.m. CDT on Monday, NHC of New Orleans tweeted.
The mayor of Jean lafitte, Louisiana, says rescue teams are being put together to save the more than 150 people believed to be in immediate or imminent danger after tidal surge levees overtopped.
Mayor Tim Kerner Jr said that heavy rain and storm surge over-topped the levee, causing life-threatening flooding in the area.
"The Town of Jean Lafitte Tidal Surge Levees have overtopped," he wrote on Facebook. "Please prepare yourself if you live inside the tidal surge system. Rescue boats will be here as soon as the weather permits."
Kerner Jr called it the "worst storm in our history," according to WGNO-TV.
“We have a small group trying to take out the people in the most imminent danger,” Kerner told the station. “This is a very dangerous situation. I’ve never seen so much water in my life. We’ve lost our school and everything, but now with people’s lives, it has turned into a total rescue mission.”
“People’s lives are I believe at stake now,” he continued. “We are trying to get them out as soon as fast as we can and as soon as this weather [breaks] we are going to send an army to them.”
A hurricane warning is currently in effect from Morgan City, Louisiana, to the mouth of the Pearl River, meaning that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area.
Those areas include Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and metropolitan New Orleans, according to a 10 p.m. CDT update by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) on Sunday.
A storm surge warning is in effect for Morgan City to the Alabama/Florida border -- as well as Lake Borgne, Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Maurepas, and Mobile Bay.
"A storm surge warning means there is a danger of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the coastline in the indicated locations," according to the NHC.
"This is a life-threatening situation," the NHC added. "Persons located within these areas should take all necessary actions to protect life and property from rising water and the potential for other dangerous conditions. Promptly follow evacuation and other instructions from local officials."
Meanwhile, a tropical storm warning is in effect for Intracoastal City, Louisiana to west of Morgan City -- along with the mouth of the Pearl River to the Alabama/Florida border.
Life threatening storm surge inundating will occur tonight along portions of the coast between Burns Point, Louisiana, to Ocean Springs, Mississippi.
"Overtopping of local levees outside of the Hurricane and Storm Damage Risk Reduction System is possible where local inundation values may be higher," according to a 10 p.m. CDT update by the National Hurricane Center.
Wind damage will occur near the core of Ida.
Through early Monday, damaging winds will spread near the track of Ida's center into southwestern Mississippi.
"These winds will likely lead to widespread tree damage and power outages," the NHC wrote.
Heavy rainfall will continue tonight through Monday across southeast Louisiana, coastal Mississippi, and southwestern Alabama, resulting in "considerable to life-threatening flash and urban flooding and significant riverine flooding impacts."
"As Ida moves farther inland, considerable flooding impacts are possible across portions of the Lower Mississippi Valley, Tennessee Valley, Upper Ohio Valley, Central Appalachians, and Mid-Atlantic through Wednesday," according to the NHC.
More than one million customers are without power in Louisiana due to Hurricane Ida, including all of New Orleans.
As of early Monday, 1,002,184 customers were without power in Louisiana, according to PowerOutage.US, which tracks nationwide outages.
"Over one million electric customers are without power due to #HurricaneIda, with 12 counties over 80% out," PowerOutage.US tweeted around 12:30 a.m. Monday.
More than 43,000 customers also didn't have power in Mississippi.
President Biden on Sunday declared that a major disaster exists in Louisiana and ordered Federal aid to supplement state, tribal, and local recovery efforts in the areas impacted by Hurricane Ida.
The action makes federal funding available to people in the parishes of Ascension, Assumption, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberia, Iberville, Jefferson, Lafourche, Livingston, Orleans, Plaquemines, Pointe Coupee, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. Helena, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Martin, St. Mary, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Terrebonne, Washington, West Baton Rouge, and West Feliciana.
"Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster," according to the White House.
Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, had previously requested that Biden declare a major disaster for the state.
"I am extremely grateful to Pres. Biden for his swift response to my request," Edwards tweeted.
Federal funding will be available to state, tribal, and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for debris removal.
"Damage assessments are continuing in other areas, and more parishes and additional forms of assistance may be designated after the assessments are fully completed," the White House added.
As of 10 p.m. CDT, Hurricane Ida was located about 30 miles east-southeast of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The storm was moving north-northwest at 9 mph with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph.
"On the forecast track, the center of Ida will move farther inland over southeastern Louisiana tonight," according to the National Hurricane Center. "Ida is then forecast to move well inland over portions of western Mississippi Monday and Monday night, and move across the Tennessee Valley on Tuesday."
Ida was downgraded to a Category 2 Hurricane late Sunday after making landfall on the coast of Louisiana earlier in the day as a powerful Category 4 storm.
As of 10 p.m. CDT, Ida's maximum sustained winds were at 105 mph -- down from 120 mph earlier in the evening, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Catastrophic storm surge, extreme winds and flash flooding were still continuing in portions of southeastern Louisiana, the NHC says.
The first death related to Hurricane Ida has been reported in Louisiana, according to the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office.
"Shortly after 8:30 p.m. deputies received reports of a citizen possibly injured from a fallen tree at a residence off of Highway 621 in Prairieville," the sheriff's office wrote on Facebook. "Deputies arrived on scene and confirmed that the victim is now deceased."
The Sewerage & Water Board of New Orleans lost Entergy power, but said in an 9 p.m. update that its teams are working to make up for it by using their own self-generated power sources.
Residents are urged to limit water usage at home to prevent sewage backups. They were asked to minimize wastewater leaving their homes by "not running your dishwasher or washing clothes."
"We have worked to obtain backup power for some of these stations & we will mobilize those units when it is safe to traverse the city," SWB New Orleans tweeted. "In order to prevent sewage backups, we have asked residents to limit water usage at home, thus decreasing the amount of wastewater we must remove."
Entergy New Orleans said Ida’s intensity has caused catastrophic damage in its path, including a "load imbalance to the company’s transmission and generation."
The entire Orleans Parish was without power "due to catastrophic transmission damage."
They said the only power in the city is coming from generators.
"We’re making every effort to learn more and rectify," Entergy tweeted.
The National Weather Service in New Orleans has issued a tornado warning Sunday evening for Southeastern St. Tammany Parish in southeastern Louisiana, Southwestern Hancock County in southern Mississippi and South central Pearl River County in southern Mississippi.
"TAKE COVER NOW! Move to a basement or an interior room on the lowest floor of a sturdy building. Avoid windows," the agency said in a notice. "If you are outdoors or in a vehicle, move to the closest substantial shelter and protect yourself from flying debris."
A hotel in LaPalace, Louisiana has been engulfed in flood water from Hurricane Ida, according to a photo by Twitter user Timboi.
"Right now we are in a hotel in laplace bc st charles did a mandatory evacuation and well we arent doing good," the caption reads. "The hotel has a back up generator but its flooding really bad."
Hurricane Ida knocked out power to the entire city of New Orleans, hours after blasting ashore as one of the most powerful storms to ever hit the U.S., New Orleans government officials said.
The city's Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness said on Twitter that energy company Entergy confirmed that New Orleans has no power, and that the only power in the city was coming from generators.
The message included a screenshot that cited "catastrophic transmission damage" for the power failure.The National Weather Service said Ida, which came ashore as a powerful Category 4 hurricane, had weakened to a Category 3 storm with top sustained winds of up to 115 mph as its eye moved west of the city.
AT&T will not charge its customers impacted by Hurricane Ida for going over their talk, text, or data limits.
"Hi, it's AT&T. If you live an area affected by Hurricane Ida, don't worry about going over your talk, text, and data limits," a text sent out to AT&T customers, and confirmed by FOX Business reads. "We won't charge you for any overages from Aug. 9 at 12:00 a.m. to Sept. 4 at 11:59 p.m. Just stay safe and connected."
Ida first made landfall at Port Fourchon, Louisiana on Sunday morning, 16-years to the day that Hurricane Katrina made landfall and devastated much of the same area in Ida's path.
The storm rapidly grew from a Category 2 to an "extremely dangerous" Category 4 hurricane. Hurricane Ida, which is projected to continue moving northwest through Sunday evening with a turn to the north by Monday morning, has been downgraded to a Category 3 storm.
Video shared by Twitter user @985dontrell shows the devastating impact left behind by Hurricane Ida in Port Fourchon, Louisiana.
Hurricane Ida made landfall in the area on Sunday morning and has slammed the Louisiana coast with extreme winds and flooding. Over 700,000 customers across the state are without power as a result of the Category 3 storm.
Ida is projected to continue moving northwest through Sunday evening with a turn to the north by Monday morning.
The city of New Orleans is out of power Sunday evening, according to a tweet by its emergency preparedness campaign, NOLA Ready.
NOLA Ready added that any remaining power in the city is coming directly from generators.
There are more than 700,000 customers across Louisiana without power as Hurricane Ida continues to slam the state with extreme winds and flooding. Conditions are expected to worsen into Monday as the Category 3 storm moves inland.
Cajun Navy Relief (CNR) president Colleen Udell told Fox News that the impact of Hurricane Ida is "unprecedented."
"When we take a look at history – look at Hurricane Katrina, what it did. Hurricane Michael, when it came into the panhandle of Florida. Look at Hurricane Harvey. Look at Hurricane Laura. This is unprecedented for the state of Louisiana," Udell said. "It is going to be a mess."
The rescue operations group, which has more than 100 volunteers who are "actively working the storm" and a volunteer network of more than 3,000 people who they can "tap into at any time", is taking an "all-hands on deck" approach, according to Udell.
The Category 3 storm is projected to continue moving northwest through Sunday evening with a turn to the north by Monday morning.
A spokesperson for St. Bernard Parish President Guy McInnis confirmed to Fox News that approximately 22 barges have broken loose near Chalmette, Louisiana Sunday evening due to extreme weather conditions from Hurricane Ida. The information was relayed to McInnis by the U.S. Coast Guard Heartland.
A 45-member team of Miami-Dade Fire Rescue officials are en route to Mississippi to support rescue operations and to be ready to respond to areas impacted by Hurricane Ida.
In addition to Miami-Dade Fire Rescue, Florida Gov. Ron Desantis tweeted that his state's Division of Emergency Management has deployed and staged two urban search and rescue task forces in Mississippi as well as a task force and 50 Florida National Guard members in Louisiana.
"We will continue to use all available resources to support impacted areas and communities as needed," Desantis said.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has requested a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration due to the severe impact of Hurricane Ida, which has slammed the state's coast after making landfall in Port Fourchon on Sunday as a Category 4 storm with 155 mile per hour winds. Over 600,000 customers across southern Louisiana are currently without power due to the storm.
“Hurricane Ida is one of the strongest storms to ever hit Louisiana. It is our goal to assist our local agencies and the citizens of the state as quickly as possible," Edwards said in a statement. "This major disaster declaration will help Louisiana better respond to this crisis and protect the health and safety of our people, and I hope the White House will act quickly so we can begin getting additional aid and assistance to our people."
The state has deployed over 4,000 members of the Louisiana National Guard and pre-positioned search and rescue teams, boats and other assets in an effort to help people as soon as it is safe to do so. To date, the state has incurred nearly $5 million in emergency protective measures preparing for the storm.
The request seeks individual and critical needs assistance for local parishes dealing with the storm's impact. It also requests public assistance and debris removal for infrastructure damage in the state. In addition, Edwards has requested public assistance related to emergency protective actions, shelter and temporary housing costs. The state is asking that the federal cost share for the requested work be increased to 100% for 30 days.
On Friday, President Biden approved the Governor’s request for a Federal Declaration of Emergency prior to the storm making landfall.
Hurricane Ida's winds have torn the roof off of Lady of the Sea General Hospital in Galliano, Louisiana, according to footage from local NBC reporter Christina Watkins.
Ida made landfall in Port Fourchon at approximately 11:55 a.m. Central Time Sunday with maximum sustained winds of about 150 miles per hour, according to the National Weather Service.
A beachside home in Grand Isle, Louisiana has been devastated by rising flood waters, according to a Facebook post by local Christie Angelette.
"This is heartbreaking," Angelette wrote. "It looks like a levee breach this is on the beachside at my parents home."
Both flood and extreme wind warnings are in effect for the areas of Metairie, Kenner, and Houma, Louisiana.
Video shared by Fox 8 New Orleans shows multiple buildings in Delacroix, Louisiana surrounded by flooding and gusting winds.
An extreme wind warning is in effect for Metairie, Kenner, and Houma Louisiana until 6:30 PM Central Time for extremely dangerous hurricane winds. In addition, a flood warning is in effect for those areas until 10 p.m. Central Time and Dalcour and Braithwaite Louisiana until 11 p.m. Central Time.
"Treat these imminent extreme winds as if a tornado was approaching and move immediately to an interior room or shelter NOW!," National Weather Service New Orleans tweeted.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards says that the state's national guard has been activated to respond to Hurricane Ida. According to Edwards, over 4,000 guardsmen are ready to serve. In addition, wildlife and fishery agents are 'on hand' for search and rescue.
The state national guard has 195 high-water vehicles, 73 rescue, and 34 helicopters set up across the state across southern Louisiana to help support search and rescue, evacuations and recon missions as needed.
However, Edwards warned that residents should be prepared to shelter in place for the next 72 hours, citing dangerous conditions for first responders.
"You can't operate these boats or high water vehicles in these conditions and you can't dispatch a first responder if you're gonna make the first responder be in a bad situation," Edwards said during a briefing Sunday. "This is why we tell people you need to be prepared to stay for the first 72 hours on your own...Nobody should be expecting that tonight a first responder will be able to respond to a call for help."
As of Sunday afternoon, over 400,000 customers in southern Louisiana are without power due to the storm.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards assured during a press briefing on Sunday that the state's storm damage reduction system for Hurricane Ida is expected to 'hold as intended.'
"There is no doubt that the coming days and weeks are going to be incredibly difficult for our state, but we are prepared," Edwards said. "The hurricane storm damage reduction system will hold as intended. Will it be tested? Yes. But was built for this moment. I have tremendous confidence in the team that we have built here."
President Biden warned during a briefing at FEMA on Sunday that Hurricane Ida will be 'life-threatening' and that the devastation is 'likely to be immense.'
He emphasized that anyone in the path of the storm should listen to instructions from their state officials. In addition, Biden has been in touch with governors from Michigan Louisiana and Alabama, who he said will get the "full resources of the federal government."
In advance of the storm’s landfall, President Biden approved Emergency Declarations for the states of Louisiana and Mississippi, authorizing emergency preparation and protective measures, including direct Federal assistance such as power generation, air transportation assets, wildlife management assistance, and water management for both states.
More than 2,400 FEMA employees were deployed and Incident Management Assistance Teams and Urban Search and Rescue teams were activated. FEMA also prepositioned millions of meals and liters of water, as well as tarps, generators, and additional ambulances.
Meanwhile, the Coast Guard has positioned vessels and aircraft for search and rescue efforts and the American Red Cross has opened shelters across the impacted states with cots, blankets, comfort kits and ready-to-eat meals as well and is implementing steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19, including through the use of masking, rapid testing, and social distancing.
In addition, the Department of Energy is working with private sector power providers and and power restoration crews from nearby states as well as power restoration experts from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Army Corps of Engineers has also activated planning and response teams for debris, temporary roofing, and temporary housing.
The administrative office of 911 for Orleans Parish, Louisiana on Sunday reported a temporary 911 outage hours before Hurricane Ida made landfall.The outage lasted less than half an hour Sunday morning.
The Orleans Parish Communication District's initial assessment was that the outage was linked to an issue with the city's AT&T network, a spokesperson told FOX Business, but the office is "currently conducting an investigation into the matter so cannot confirm" the cause of the outage "until the investigation is complete."
The city is asking residents to make 911 calls for "life-threatening emergencies only," including street flooding, power lines that have gone down and people or cars trapped in floodwater.
FEMA on Sunday gave the following tips to Louisiana and Mississippi residents sheltering in place during Hurricane Ida: "Go into an interior room with few windows if possible"; "lock all doors, close windows & air vents, and seal them using plastic & duct tape"; and "turn off fans & AC."
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell on Sunday afternoon held a press conference just as Hurricane Ida made landfall in southwestern Louisiana.
"Everyone has to make a decision to leave voluntarily, which I'm recommending. ... If you want to leave, you need to do that now," Cantrell said.
She said she has been told the storm "will in no way be weakening."
The eye of Hurricane Ida reached landfall Sunday around noon CST, near Port Fourchon, Louisiana.
Ida is still a category storm that the National Hurricane Center is calling "extremely dangerous."
The hurricane's maximum sustained winds were 150 mph when it made landfall, according to the NHC and data from an Air Force Reserve aricraft. Sustained winds of 43 mph and gusts of 67 mph were reported at Lakefront Airport over the last hour.
Footage from an airplane shared by the National Hurricane Center on Twitter showed the eye of Hurricane Ida from above.
The NHC reported earlier this morning that the eye of the storm would reach southeastern Louisiana by the afternoon.
"Stunning video taken from inside the eye of #Ida this morning by the NESDIS Ocean Winds Research team during a flight on the @NOAA_HurrHunter P3 aircraft @NOAASatellites," the NHC tweeted.
An extreme wind warning is in effect for Houma, Lousiana; Bayou Cane, Louisiana; and Estelle, Louisiana, according to the National Weather Service New Orleans.
The warning will be in effect until 1:30 p.m. CDT "for extremely dangerous hurricane winds," NWS New Orleans tweeted. "Treat these imminent extreme winds as if a tornado was approaching and move immediately to an interior room or shelter NOW!"
Damaging winds will move inland toward inland southern Louisiana and Mississippi throughout Sunday, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The eye of an "extremely dangerous" Hurricane Ida will reach the coast of Louisiana "within the next few hours" as the Category 4 storm moves inland.
"Hurricane-force winds" and a "catestrophic storm surge" is reaching the southwestern part of the state, according to a 10 a.m. update from the National Hurricane Center.
Ida's maximum sustained winds are near 150 mph, and the storm is moving northwest.
"A turn toward the north should occur by Monday morning, followed by a slightly faster northeastward motion by Monday night and Tuesday," the NHC said.
Flash flood warnings in Louisiana are worsening as Hurricane Ida reaches landfall, according to the National Weather Service.
The NWS described heavy rainfall in the areas of southeastern Louisiana and coastal Mississippi and Alabama as "concerning."
Flash flooding in the affected areas is also likely, and rainfall is expected to reach rates of 1 in. to 3 in. per hour for six hours, totaling 3 in. to 6 in. of rain this afternoon. More efficient rainfall rates of 2 in. to 3 in. per hour will "begin coming ashore near the mouth of the Mississippi River," according to the NWS.
Hurricane-force winds have reached parts of southeastern Louisiana, according to at 8 a.m. update from the National Hurricane Center.
A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration station reported a sustained wind of 105 mph and a wind gust of 121 mph, the NHC reported.
Hurricane Ida, which grew into a Category 4 hurricane overnight, is already approaching a Category 5 storm, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The storm is forecast to have maximum sustained winds of 155 mph -- just 2 mph below Category 5 strength -- and is expected to reach landfall by late Sunday morning or early afternoon.
The NHC is calling the storm "extremely life-threatening" between Burns Point, Louisiana, and Ocean Springs, Mississippi.
Ida will produce "devastating winds" and "heavy rainfall" across southeastern Louisiana, southwestern Mississippi and even far southwestern Alabama.
Hurricane Ida, which grew to a Category 4 storm overnight, is expected to reach landfall within the "next few hours," accoridng to a 7 a.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center.
The NHC is calling the storm "life-threatening" and "extremely dangerous."
"On the forecast track, the center of Ida will make landfall along the coast of southeastern Louisiana within the hurricane warning area late this morning or early this afternoon," the NHC said.
The hurricane is forecast to take a northeastward turn by Monday night and move inland over Louisiana and western Mississippi.
Hurricane Ida's maximum sustained winds have intensified to 150 mph, with some gusts stronger than that, according to the National Hurricane Center.
"We are currently tracking waterspouts over marine and marshy area," National Weather Service New Orleans said.
According to Fox Weather's Janice Dean, only two hurricanes on record -- since 1851 -- have made landfall in Louisiana with sustained winds that strong: Last Island in 1856, and Hurricane Laura in 2020. Both of those hurricanes were 150 mph at landfall.
Hurricane Ida, which strengthened into a Category 4 storm overnight, is continuing to strengthen. Maximum sustained winds have increased to 145 mph, the National Hurricane Center said in a 5 a.m. CDT update.
The "extremely dangerous" storm is forecast to make landfall in southeastern Louisiana Sunday.
Hurricane Ida, a "dangerous" Category 4 storm, continues to strengthen as it approaches the Gulf Coast.
A life-threatening storm surge, potentially catastrophic wind damage and flooding rainfall will start in parts of the Northern Gulf Coast later Sunday morning, the National Hurricane Center said in an update at 4 a.m. CT.
The president of one of Louisiana’s Gulf Coast parishes spoke bluntly Saturday afternoon as she warned residents about the potential dangers of Hurricane Ida.
"I want to reiterate, the storm surge that we are expecting is unsurvivable," Jefferson Parish President Cynthia Lee Sheng said at a news conference, hours ahead of Ida reaching Category 3 and then Category 4 early Sunday, with winds over 130 miles per hour.
"You have time to get out," Sheng told residents, "especially in those areas where there is a mandatory evacuation. We need you to leave immediately."
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Hurricane Ida strengthened into a "dangerous" Category 4 storm with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph hours before its expected U.S. landfall Sunday afternoon, the National Hurricane Center reported at 2 a.m. CT on Sunday.
The storm is centered about 175 miles southeast of coastal Houma, Louisiana, and is traveling northwest at 15 mph.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Hurricane Ida strengthened into a major Category 3 hurricane overnight into Sunday with maximum sustained winds near 115 mph as it moved closer to Louisiana.
Ida is expected to continue to rapidly strengthen into an "extremely dangerous" storm, likely a Category 4 in the next 12 hours before it makes landfall in the U.S.
Rapid weakening is expected after landfall, the National Hurricane Center said in a update.
Many of Louisiana's hospitals already have an excess of coronavirus patients amid a surge in the state and ahead of Hurricane Ida's expected landfall on Sunday.
The hurricane is forecast to became a "dangerous" Category 4 storm and could further stress already crowded hospitals.
Daily tallies of new cases went from a few hundred a day through much of the spring and early summer to thousands a day by late July. Statewide, hospitalizations had peaked at around 2,000 or less in three previous surges. But that number peaked at more than 3,000 in August. The number reported Saturday was near 2,700, still high enough to stress hospitals.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
As Hurricane Ida moves rapidly toward Gulf Coast, Hurricane Nora was swirling over the eastern Pacific Ocean on Saturday.
According to the National Hurricane Center, the storm was located approximately 230 miles south of Cabo Corrientes, Mexico and moving toward the northwest near 12 mph.
The center of the storm is expected to reach the southwestern coast of Mexico later Saturday before passing near the coast of the states of Jalisco and Nayarit.
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Sixteen years to the day after Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans in 2005, Hurricane Ida is set to slam into the city on Sunday as a "dangerous" Category 4 storm.
Katrina devastated the Mississippi and Louisiana coasts. A Category 3 storm, Katrina was blamed for 1,800 deaths and caused levee breaches and catastrophic flooding in New Orleans. The city still hasn't fully recovered.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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