“I want to reiterate, the storm surge that we are expecting is unsurvivable.” Jefferson Parish President Cynthia Lee Sheng says of Hurricane Ida.
Sheng’s Jefferson Parish resides in Louisiana’s Gulf Coast. And to protect her 440,000 residents, she is being as blunt as possible.
Jefferson lies close to both New Orleans and the Louisiana coast – placing it in extreme danger from Hurricane Ida. The terrible storm rose to a Category 3 – then Category 4 – in just Sunday morning.
“You have time to get out,” Sheng tells residents today as part of a news conference. “Especially in those areas where there is a mandatory evacuation. We need you to leave immediately.”
Sheng then reiterates that “the storm surge that we are expecting is unsurvivable,” to her Jefferson Parish.
Winds over 130 miles per hour continue Sunday, with the storm only to gain more strength. Already, weekend news reports show traffic for miles around New Orleans. NOLA streets cannot contain the number of individuals evacuating.
News reports on Saturday showed vehicles backed up on New Orleans-area highways as residents heeded warnings from public officials and tried to leave the area before Ida’s expected landfall Sunday. Parish President Sheng is far from alone in urging citizens to leave. Thankfully, as Ida makes landfall Sunday, a large portion of residents are heeding public officials’ warnings and are at least on their way out.
Hurricane Ida Threatens ‘Entire State of Louisiana’
Some residents, however, are choosing to stay behind. This is where Sheng’s greatest concern lies, as many citizens live outside New Orleans’ levee protection system, reports WKRG-TV of Mobile, Alabama. The system is in place to limit flooding, especially during hurricanes.
The levee is about to be put to the ultimate test again, too. Forecasts point to strong winds and an immense storm surge for the majority of Louisiana this week. The former brings the high potential for flash flooding, which holds the potential to decimate the state once again. In plain terms, a “storm surge” refers to a rise in sea level that comes with a specific storm. In Hurricane Ida’s case, a storm surge will cause devastating flooding of coastal communities.
Reporter Dom Calicchio cites that many Louisiana crews are clearing out catch basins Sunday. In addition, LA workers are moving to ensure construction sites are secure enough to survive the storm.
Please stay safe out there, Outsiders, and heed any government evacuation orders.