Ida set to make landfall Sunday, shelters now open

Published 8:35 am Sunday, August 29, 2021

Officials with the National Weather Service in New Orleans/Baton Rouge said Sunday morning that the arrival of Hurricane Ida is imminent.

At 7 a.m. Sunday, officials noted that Ida is a major hurricane (category 4) at the time, approaching the northern gulf coast. Maximum sustained winds are 150 mph. The system was expected to continue northwestward with a turn to the north-northwest later Sunday morning, making landfall as a category 4 storm Sunday afternoon.

Officials noted that significant, life-threatening impacts will occur, including storm surge, damaging winds and heavy rainfall and isolated tornadoes.

As of Sunday, Washington Parish was under a hurricane warning, tornado watch and flash flood watch.

On Saturday, Washington Parish President Richard “Ned” Thomas Jr. announced that two shelters of last resort opened at 6 p.m. Saturday for residents who do not feel safe in their homes due to the potential of high winds.

The shelters are at the Bogalusa High School, located at 100 M.J. Israel Drive; and Franklinton High School, located at 1 Demon Circle.

Residents are responsible for their transportation to and from the shelter. Transportation will not be provided.

Thomas noted that this is a shelter of “last resort,” and residents are encouraged to work with their family, friends and neighbors before using the shelter. A cot is the only thing that will be provided, and residents should bring anything they need – including food, clothing, bedding and medicine.

No contraband or weapons will be allowed and will be confiscated before entering. It should be understood that these shelters are safe havens only and do not have back-up electricity.

Shelter managers will have strict COVID-19 protocols in place among people who seek safety in a shelter during severe weather events. Masks are required and must be worn at all times.

Citizens who are COVID-19 positive or at the request of a health care professional are in quarantine are asked to evacuate and seek safe shelter in a hotel.

The detailed NWS forecast for Bogalusa was as follows:

Sunday during the day – Tropical storm conditions expected, with hurricane conditions possible. Showers and thunderstorms. Some of the storms could produce heavy rain. Steady temperature around 79. Chance of precipitation is 100 percent. New rainfall amounts between 1 and 2 inches possible.

Sunday night – Tropical storm conditions expected, with hurricane conditions possible. Showers and thunderstorms. Some of the storms could produce heavy rain. Low around 73. Chance of precipitation is 100 percent. New rainfall amounts in excess of 4 inches possible.

Monday during the day – Tropical storm conditions possible, with hurricane conditions also possible. Showers and thunderstorms. Some of the storms could produce heavy rain. High near 82. Chance of precipitation is 100 percent. New rainfall amounts between 3 and 4 inches possible.

Monday night – Showers and thunderstorms. Some of the storms could produce heavy rain. Low around 73. South wind 5 to 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90 percent.