The eye of hurricane Ida, the peak of the storm, has reached the south coast of the US. Off the coast of Louisiana, wind speeds are measured up to 250 kilometers per hour. Upon arrival at the coast – at Port Fourchon town, the storm was almost a hurricane of the fifth, also highest category. There are no reports about victims yet. However, it is clear that nearly 400,000 residents have failed power.
Air traffic to and from Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport is completely silent. According to experts, tornadoes can also occur during the storm. President Joe Biden has called Louisiana residents to “take the storm seriously.” According to the Governor, Ida is “one of the most powerful storms ever” in the region.
Rescuers will not be able to reach the areas most affected by Monday morning (local time). As long as Ida still rages the coastal areas, its too dangerous for the helpers to go.
The coastal areas southwest of the city of New Orleans will initially be reachable only by helicopter. Most residents seem to have put themselves to safety in time, according to the Governor.
The storm is slowly moving north. Only in the night of Sunday to Monday, Dutch time, the hurricane will really fall into force.
The question is, according to American media, what the hurricane means to pressure on Louisiana hospitals. The hospitals are full of the high number of covid patients.
Rain and storm surges
In addition to high wind speeds, the Mississippi Delta residents face extreme rainfall and storm surges, allowing large areas to be flooded. The wind can push the water up to five meters above normal level. Thats what waves will come over.
In addition, 300-500 millimeters of rain falls in large parts of southern Louisiana, according to Weeronline. Thats half of what normally falls in the Netherlands in a whole year.
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For the city of New Orleans, hundreds of millimetres of precipitation is expected. As the storm draws deeper inland, the wind is rapidly declining in force. However, that does not apply to the rain. In states like Mississippi, Tennessee and Kentucky, 100 to 200 millimetres of rain are expected in many places in many places in the coming days. Over the course of the week, the remains of Ida even reach Washington and New York. A lot of rain is expected there too.
Rescue organization FEMA has 2.5 million meals, 3 million litres of drinking water and 64 generators in the region. Hundreds of emergency workers, ninety ambulances, eight ambulance planes and seven helicopters are on hand.
Around 5000 National Guard reservists were summoned in Louisiana itself. In addition, hundreds of salvation experts from across the country have been mobilized. The Coast Guard keeps helicopters and boats ready. The US Army is also preparing for an aid operation.