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- Hurricane Warning for the Louisiana Coast including New Orleans
- Storm Surge Warning for much of the Louisiana and Mississippi Coast
- Tropical Storm Warning for the Mississippi Coastline
As of Sunday morning, Hurricane Ida was 50 miles southwest of the mouth of the Mississippi River, moving to the northwest at 15 mph. Maximum sustained winds are 150 mph. Ida may further intensify before reaching the coast this afternoon.
Ida will likely make landfall on the southeast LA coast, probably due south of Baton Rouge, Sunday afternoon. This puts much of southeast Louisiana, including New Orleans, along with the MS coast west of Bay St. Louis at risk for a catastrophic hurricane on Sunday afternoon through Monday morning.
Winds just to the east of Ida at landfall could reach 140-160 mph with a 12-16 foot storm surge along the LA coast. The West of Bay St Louis, the MS coast should be prepared for hurricane force winds and a 8-12 foot storm surge. The surge could reach 5-8 feet in Lake Pontchartrain and in the Slidell LA region. Ida will likely spawn short-lived but numerous tornadoes in its northeastern quadrant once it makes landfall.
Needless to say, Ida is a powerful and dangerous storm. You should not be near the beaches or coastal bayous in LA or MS. Be alert for freshwater flooding as well. If at all possible, move away from the coast. Please follow the evacuation orders of your local emergency management officials. If you are evacuating, be prepared for the trip away from the coast to take many more hours than it would under normal conditions. You need to complete your storm / evacuation preparations tonight.
Although Ida will weaken once it makes landfall, southeast LA and southwest MS should be prepared for hurricane force winds that will cause extensive tree damage and associated power outages. If possible, put your RV in a protected location from both winds and falling trees. You may want to ensure you can use your RV as a ‘lifeboat’ if your home suffers and extended power outage.
If you are RV’ing in the lower Mississippi River Valley, Tennessee River Valley and even the Ohio River Valley this week, be prepared for heavy rains and flash flooding, very gusty winds and the possibility of brief tornadoes Monday and Tuesday. There will likely be a broad swath of 4-6 inch rainfall covering virtually all of MS, western TN and much of KY. Be very cautious if your campsite is near a stream, small river or lake that may rise rapidly. Have a plan to get yourself to higher ground.
As always, please monitor the National Hurricane Center forecasts, either directly from their website, through local TV stations, or reputable, established weather websites.