Ida: Louisiana under the threat of an “extremely dangerous” hurricane

Sixteen after Katrina. Hurricane Ida, category 1, made landfall Friday evening on the south coast of the province of Pinar del Rio, in western Cuba and current epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic on the island. He must go back this Saturday to Louisiana where he could move to category 4 and become “extremely dangerous”.

The Category 1 hurricane made landfall Friday evening (August 27) in Pinar del Rio province in western Cuba with heavy rains and sustained winds of 130 km / h, said the Cuban Meteorological Institute (Insmet).

More than 10,000 people were evacuated and electricity was cut off preventively, in this region which has become the epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic on the island. In the capital, Havana, near this province, public transport was suspended as a precaution at midday, and thousands of people had been evacuated.

The hurricane is moving northwest at a speed of 24 km / h. It had previously passed through the Island of Youth, south of the main island of Cuba, but the winds and rains it caused resulted in only minor damage to agriculture and to homes including the roof was torn off. The American Hurricane Center (NHC) estimates that it could become “a major hurricane” and “extremely dangerous”, which could reach category 4 (on a scale of 5), and cause winds of more than 200 km / h on American soil.

1,800 dead in 2005

Faced with Ida’s arrival, Joe Biden on Friday approved a declaration of state of emergency for Louisiana in order to bring a “federal assistant” to the preparation efforts, voluntary and mandatory evacuation orders having been decreed in some places.

It is an extreme challenge for our State ”, worried the governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards, while his State is currently facing a new outbreak of Covid-19, which is undermining the functioning of hospitals.

Louisiana is frequently affected by hurricanes and has yet to fully heal the wounds inflicted by the trauma of 2005, when Katrina ravaged Louisiana, killing more than 1,800. During this traumatic episode, New Orleans was 80% flooded after the dikes protecting the city had given way.

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