New Orleans Loses Energy as Hurricane Ida Inundates Louisiana

New Orleans Loses Energy as Hurricane Ida Inundates Louisiana

A bunch of individuals cross an intersection throughout Hurricane Ida on August 29, 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Picture: Brandon Bell (Getty Photographs)

All of New Orleans misplaced energy Sunday evening after Hurricane Ida introduced down eight transmission strains that ship electrical energy to town, in response to a brand new report from Nola.com. Everybody in Orleans parish, dwelling to New Orleans, misplaced energy round 7:15 p.m. native time, 8:15 p.m. ET, and it’s not clear when energy is perhaps restored.

Native utility Entergy stated it was coping with “catastrophic transmission injury.” WWLW investigative reporter David Hammer tweeted that the corporate had eight transmission strains go down, resulting in the huge blackout. The principle transmission tower has collapsed into the Mississippi River.

About 993,000 individuals in Louisiana and about 32,000 individuals in Mississippi are at present with out energy, in response to PowerOutage.US, which tracks energy outages throughout the nation. Native information station WWL-TV in Louisiana studies that whereas telephone calls are going straight to voicemail within the area, some textual content messages are getting by way of. New Orleans’ 96 pumps that assist town deal with stormwater have additionally misplaced energy from Entergy, forcing town’s Sewerage & Water Board that operates the system to depend on electrical energy generated in-house. Their continued operation is important as town is anticipated to obtain as much as 20 inches (51 centimeters) of rain from Ida.

Hurricane Ida, a slow-moving Class 4 storm, first made landfall round midday native time at Port Fourchon, roughly 100 miles (161 kilometers) south of New Orleans, after which once more at Galliano, about 70 miles (113 kilometer) south of New Orleans, round 2 p.m. native time. On the time of landfall, Ida had winds of 150 mph (241 kph). The storm maintained exceptional depth because it crawled inland and has solely not too long ago begun to weaken wind-wise, although it’s nonetheless packing a punch and heavy rain and surf are wreaking havoc.

Extremely, the Mississippi River even reversed course earlier this night, quickly flowing south to north in a transfer that’s more likely to improve the anticipated flood injury within the state.

The devastation of this hurricane is barely starting to be felt, with studies of individuals in Louisiana additionally shedding water of their houses. Jefferson Parish is reportedly shedding 250,000 gallons of water per hour, in response to WWL-TV, attributable to fallen timber which have broken the water system.

To make issues even worse, Louisiana has struggled not too long ago with an unlimited surge in covid-19 circumstances, pushing the native well being system to the max. The state reported 3,428 new covid-19 circumstances on Friday alone, with roughly 84% of Louisiana’s ICU beds at present occupied. NOLA.com reported {that a} backup generator failed at Thibodaux Regional Well being System in Lafourche Parish, forcing medical employees to handbook pump air out and in of sufferers’ lungs whereas they transported them to part of the hospital that also had energy. State Rep. Jerome Zeringue described the scene as “Katrinaesque.” (Hospitals notoriously misplaced energy throughout Katrina and turbines failed, contributing to mass deaths.)

Watching Ida, it’s as soon as once more clear that varied elements of the U.S. vitality grid are just too antiquated to face as much as the situations the local weather disaster has wrough. Probably the most infamous instance of a grid failing is Puerto Rico within the wake of Hurricane Maria. However hurricanes are removed from the one local weather disasters that threaten the ability provide. This yr alone, the Texas vitality grid failed catastrophically after excessive chilly hit the state, leaving a whole bunch lifeless throughout the state. (It’s virtually failed twice once more this summer season.) And California’s grid has been burdened this summer season amid wildfires, simply because it has in different current years. Declining water ranges on the state’s reservoirs and hydropower dams have added additional stress. All these disasters have proven why we’d like a modernized grid, one which without delay connects broader swaths of the nation and has built-in resilience measures to take care of more and more, sizzling, fiery, stormy, and dry situations. (Clearly it could additionally kick fossil fuels to the curb.) That’s a long-term challenge, although.

For those who’re staring on the information from outdoors the area and questioning what you are able to do to assist Ida survivors proper now, we’ve created a information on other ways that you may assist victims of the hurricane proper now.

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