UPDATED 7:02 PM PT – Saturday, August 28, 2021
Forecasters have urged for preparation as intensifying Hurricane Ida approaches the Northern Gulf Coast. A state of emergency was issued in Mississippi on Saturday as well as several counties across Alabama.
The storm is expected to reach major hurricane status before poised to strike Louisiana on Sunday, which has prompted thousands to flee coastal areas. Officials warned Louisiana residents to prepare for heavy rain and devastating winds, while weather forecasters issued hurricane warnings in counties throughout Louisiana in preparation for the category four hurricane.
Key #HurricanePrep tips from @readygov:
✅ Make an emergency plan
✅ Strengthen your home
✅ Recognize warnings and alerts
✅ Get tech ready
✅ Keep your cell phone charged
✅ Help your neighborhood
✅ Have enough supplies
✅ Prepare a go bag
— Homeland Security (@DHSgov) August 29, 2021
The storm is due to hit the Pelican State as it commemorates 16 years since Hurricane Katrina. However, officials emphasized Louisiana was not the same state it was many years ago.
“I know that tomorrow for many people is a very difficult anniversary. It is the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina,” expressed Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-La.). “We have a hurricane risk reduction system in place because if the generosity of the people of the United States of America because we didn’t have that before. We also have tremendous investments and protection.”
Mandatory evacuations were issued for residents of New Orleans outside of the city’s levee system, while Mayor LaToya Cantrell (D) warned a citywide evacuation could be issued in the coming hours.
“Prepare for damaging wind power outages, heavy rain, tornadoes. What I am told is that this storm in no way will be weakening,” she explained. “There will be and there are no signs, again, that this storm will weaken and there’s always an opportunity for the storm to strengthen.”
Hurricane #Ida Advisory 10A: Ida Forecast to Strengthen Rapidly Before Landfall. Life-Threatening Storm Surge, Potentially Catastrophic Wind Damage, and Flooding Rainfall Expected to Impact the Northern Gulf Coast Beginning Sunday Morning. https://t.co/VqHn0u1vgc
— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) August 28, 2021
Hurricane Ida is said to bring a life-threatening storm surge, dangerous rainfall and flooding, and winds reaching more than 100 miles-per-hour.