Updated Aug 30, 2021 - Energy & Environment

New Orleans slammed by Hurricane Ida on 16th anniversary of Katrina

A section of a building's roof is seen after being blown off during rain and winds in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana
A section of a building's roof is seen after being blown off during rain and winds in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Photo: Patrick Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

Hurricane Ida lashed New Orleans Sunday evening on the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina — with part of the deadly Category 2 storm pummeling the city with extremely heavy winds and rains.

What's happening: Officials confirmed that the city had lost all power "due to catastrophic transmission damage" from the storm, with the only electricity in New Orleans coming from generators amid reports of flash flooding from Ida's rains.

  • New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board told WWLTV that it had lost all three feeder lines from energy provider Entergy.

Of note: The National Weather Service said late Sunday it received "multiple reports of significant flooding in LaPlace, in the New Orleans metropolitan area.

The big picture via Axios' Andrew Freedman: Ida, which had killed at least one person in the state as of Sunday night, was stronger at landfall than Hurricane Katrina, but that 2005 storm was much larger. So it drove more water ashore, creating a towering storm surge.

  • Ida was one of the major tests for the city's vast, new hurricane protection system, which was not in place 16 years ago when levees failed.

What they're saying: Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards noted Sunday the levee system would be tested but added "it was built for this moment."

Flashback: Unlike Ida, Katrina weakened before making landfall in Louisiana on Aug. 29, 2005, as a Category 3 storm with 125 mph winds.

  • More than 1,830 people died, and Katrina caused about $176 billion (in today's dollars) worth of damages — the costliest storm in U.S. history, per AP.

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Editor's note: This article has been updated the latest details on the power outage and to reflect that the storm has killed at least one person.

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