Just three weeks after Hurricane Laura caused widespread damage, Louisiana prepares for another potential hurricane. Officials expect Tropical Storm Sally to hit the southeast coast of the state on Tuesday morning. Officials also estimate the storm will be a Category 1 hurricane.
“The bottom line continues to be that Sally is expected to be a dangerous slow-moving hurricane near the coast of southeastern Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama during the next 2-3 days,” the National Hurricane Center warned.
“[Officials] have every reason to believe that this storm represents a very significant threat to the people of Southeast Louisiana,” Edwards said.
New Orleans is busy preparing for the potential hurricane.
The state has ordered mandatory evacuations for parts of or the entirety of several parishes. In New Orleans, officials issued evacuations for those living outside the levee protection system on Sunday. This included Venetian Isles, Lake Catherine and Irish Bayou. As a result of strong winds, storm surge in those areas could be 11 feet, according to NOLA Ready.
Officials also ordered areas in the St. Charles Parish and Plaquemines Parish to evacuate in preparation for the storm. According New Orleans’ Mayor LaToya Cantrell, the city distributed sandbags, made sure pumps were fully operational and also signed an emergency declaration.
“This is a storm everyone needs to take seriously. We are likely to see tropical storm-force and hurricane-strength winds for longer than Hurricane Katrina, a storm surge of four to seven feet and the possibility of 20 inches of rain,” St. Charles Parish President Matthew Jewell said Sunday. “We want residents to heed our warnings and make preparations to leave now.”
In Louisiana, around 80,000 people remain without power since Hurricane Laura three weeks ago. Laura made landfall as a Category 4 and also killed six people. The storm caused widespread damages in southwest Louisiana and also destroyed electrical grids. At its peak more than 800,000 people were without power.
On Monday, Sally had sustained winds of 65 mph. The storm was about 165 miles southeast of Biloxi, Mississippi. Officials estimate Sally to pass east of New Orleans. The storm may be at its worst in Biloxi and Gulfport, Mississippi. The storm could also affect Alabama.