Hurricane Ida kills 1, leaves “catastrophic” damage in Louisiana

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Considered as “one of the strongest storms to make landfall” by the Louisiana governor, Hurricane Ida has left one dead and “catastrophic” damage in the southeast part of the state as it hit on Sunday.

The casualty was identified as a 60-year-old man who died in Ascension Parish, according to the state Health Department. The victim’s house was struck by a falling tree.

Deputies responded at 8:30 p.m. after they received a report that an individual might have been injured in Prairieville, the parish sheriff’s office said. The responding persons were also the ones who confirmed that the victim was dead.

The National Weather Service office in New Orleans, basing its information on local law enforcement, said that more than 200 people in the town of Jean Lafitte were in “imminent danger”. Also at risk was the unincorporated community in Lafitte, in Jefferson Parish, after a wall collapsed.

“Move to higher ground now!” the weather service announced. “This is an extremely dangerous and life-threatening situation.”

From a Category 4, the hurricane has weakened to a Category 1 storm at midnight. While it has 95 mph winds, authorities warned that it can stay overnight.

Over 1 million residences and businesses were affected by a power failure, electric utilities reported. New Orleans main power utility, Entergy New Orleans, said that about 200, 000 customers lost power as the whole city was on a blackout on Sunday evening. This was caused by a “catastrophic damage” to its transmission system, it said, saying that they did not manage to restore power on Sunday night, NBC News reported.

Meanwhile, a “very significant” number of pumping stations were said to be affected by the power loss, the city’s sewer and water board said. According to the board, it has secured backup generators but “in order to prevent sewage backups, we have asked residents to limit water usage at home, thus decreasing the amount of wastewater we must remove.”