Hurricane Ida is now Tropical Storm Ida and it's still very dangerous. The storm is surging across southeastern Louisiana and southwestern Mississippi, packing dangerous storm surge, damaging winds, and flash flooding. Tropical Storm Ida has maximum sustained winds of 60 miles an hour. Ida made landfall Sunday afternoon about two hours south of New Orleans.
A federal disaster area is now declared for the parts of Louisiana affected by Hurricane Ida. President Biden declared a major disaster on Sunday, opening the way for federal assistance. Federal funds will be available to affected people in two-dozen parishes, including Orleans and East and West Baton Rouge Parishes. Grants will pay for temporary housing, home repairs, and low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses. Governor John Bel Edwards had earlier declared a state of emergency.
Hundreds of thousands of Louisiana residents are without power as Hurricane Ida moves inland after making landfall on Sunday. Entergy says the storm caused catastrophic damage to their transmission system, leaving all of Orleans Parish without power. Entergy and Cleco reporting that almost 830-thousand of their customers were in the dark as of 10:30 p.m. Sunday. Entergy officials say extra crews will be in the job, but some customers may be without power for three-weeks or longer.
9-1-1 service in New Orleans is experiencing technical difficulties. Orleans Parish officials made the announcement early Monday morning as the area remains without power due to Hurricane Ida. The parish is asking anyone in an emergency situation to go to the nearest fire station or approach the nearest police officer.
Hurricane Ida reportedly blew off part of the roof of Ochsner Medical Center Kenner in Louisiana. A nurse at Ochsner Kenner says the workers sheltered in a hallway as best they could after high winds tore off part of the roof. Plastic sheeting was put up on the ceiling as a temporary fix to stop the heavy rain from pouring in. No word yet as to whether anybody was hurt at the hospital.
Louisiana state highway officials are warning that stretches of I-10 and I-12 are closed as a result of Hurricane Ida. The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development says fallen trees, broken branches, downed power lines and other debris have made many south Louisiana roads impassable, including parts of both interstates. Highways crews will start clearing the roads as soon as the weather clears. In addition to debris and high water, some roads and bridges may have been damaged, and work crews will be assessing the damage.