“Ida” Heading Our Way; Gov. Declares State of Emergency

Tropical storm Ida is gaining strength and may reach hurricane strength before coming ashore.  According to the National Hurricane Center, Bienville Parish will likely see most activity from Ida beginning early Monday morning.  

Yesterday, Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency due to the potential impacts and further development of Tropical Storm Ida. According to the National Hurricane Center, this system is forecast to approach the northern Gulf Coast at or near major hurricane intensity Sunday. 

While there is some forecast uncertainty since the system is just forming, there is the potential for dangerous storm surge, damaging hurricane-force wind and heavy rainfall Sunday and Monday along the coast of Louisiana. A state of emergency is an administrative step that authorizes the use of state resources to aid in storm response efforts.

The Emergency Operations Center at the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) is activated, monitoring the potential storm, and coordinating with both FEMA and parish offices of emergency preparedness.

GOHSEP is urging all Louisianans to plan accordingly. Hurricane force winds of 110 miles per hour are currently forecasted. That is a strong Category 2 hurricane, and we should always prepare for a storm one category higher. Flash flooding from heavy rains can happen very quickly. While flooded roadways, flash flooding and storm surge are the immediate concerns, there is the potential for additional weather issues beginning as early as early Sunday morning with the arrival of tropical storm force winds.

Remember to take certain steps to prepare for your family and pets. Check on friends, neighbors or family members that may struggle with their preparedness plans. People should be sure to pack masks and hand sanitizer if they evacuate and if multiple households are sheltering together, they should consider indoor masking to reduce the chance of COVID-19 spreading. It is also not too late for people to get the COVID-19 vaccine, which is safe, effective and widely available all across Louisiana.

For updates from the Governor’s Office, text the word ‘IDA’ to 67283.

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