Photo courtesy of Gov. Reeves/Facebook
Following its landfall as a Category 4 Hurricane on Sunday afternoon near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, Ida has since weakened to become a tropical storm on its way through Mississippi.
While its intensity dipped, the storm has continued to bring heavy rainfall and high winds to a large portion of the state. Despite its weakening, the governor explained that Ida will not be out of the state until early Tuesday morning and that it remains a dangerous storm.
At the height of Ida’s impact, storm surges on the Coast reached eight feet in Hancock County. Highway 90 remains closed from Bay St. Louis to Ocean Springs as MDOT works to clear water and debris.
20 water rescue missions were conducted in Hancock, Harrison and Jackson Counties during the storm event. No fatalities occurred as a direct result of Ida, however, one did occur as preparations for the storm began. Governor Reeves stated that one individual died in a traffic accident in Harrison County on I-110 while picking up sandbags.
The threat of tornadoes remains over the next 12-14 hours, especially in South and Southeastern Mississippi.
So far, 12 inches of rain has been dropped along the Coast with 6 inches falling in McComb and 5 inches in the Hattiesburg area.
Governor Reeves shared that preliminary damage reports have come in from eight counties, which he says is light considering the magnitude of the storm. That number will likely grow in the coming days.
MEMA Executive Director Steven McCraney announced that power outages in Mississippi remain around 88,000—down from a peak of 140,000+.
The governor was joined by McCraney, FEMA Region IV Administrator Gracia Szczech, Department of Public Safety Commissioner Sean Tindell, MSDH Director of Health Protection Jim Craig and Adjutant General Janson Boyles with the Mississippi National Guard.
Watch the briefing below:
Craig shared MSDH tips regarding how to stay staff in the aftermath of a storm, including food & water safety. MSDH vaccination and testing sites in Central and South Mississippi will remain closed on Tuesday.
He also noted that four nursing homes are on generators with two reporting minor damage. Five hospitals are using generators and six are reporting damage. Two assisted living facilities are closed with 55 residents being either relocated or going home with family members.