Hurricane Ida

Hurricane Ida is heading for Louisiana as an “extremely dangerous” cyclone

Hurricane Ida will hit Louisiana 16 years after Hurricane Katrina landed as a Category 3 cyclone with 125 mph (201 km / h) winds near New Orleans. If the forecast is correct.

The Hurricane Ida made landfall on Friday on the southern coast of the province of Pinar de Rio, in western Cuba, before moving to Louisiana, United States, where it could reach Category 4 and become an “extremely dangerous” hurricane.


Ida , a storm converted into a category 1 hurricane , penetrated Cuban soil through the fishing town of La Coloma, in Pinar del Río, at around 00:30 GMT, with sustained winds of 130 km / h, indicated the Institute of Meteorology of Cuba (Insmet ).

The hurricane , which hit the Isla de la Juventud municipality (southwest) in the afternoon, is moving northwest at about 24 km / h, with maximum sustained winds of 130 km / h and stronger gusts, indicated the National Hurricane Center. of the United States (NHC, in English), based in Miami.

It is expected to hit US shores on Sunday as an “extremely dangerous” hurricane, he added.

After crossing Pinar del Río from south to north, Ida will move through the southeast and the center of the Gulf of Mexico on the night of this Friday and Saturday, and is forecast to make landfall in western Louisiana “like a hurricane of category 4, “US meteorologists said in a tweet.

The NHC also warned that Ida, a category 1 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale out of a total of 5, can generate “rainfall totals” of up to “20 inches” in western Cuba and cause “flash floods.”

The path of Hurricane Ida.  (AFP).
The path of Hurricane Ida. (AFP).

As the surface layer of the oceans warms due to climate change, cyclones become more powerful and carry more water, posing an increasing threat to coastal communities, according to scientists.

Storm surges, amplified by rising sea levels, can be especially devastating, and the NHC warned that Ida could cause “large and destructive waves” in western coastal areas of the country.

“Double threat”

Ida arrives at a time when Cuba , with 11.2 million inhabitants, faces a high rate of coronavirus infections, which has put its health services, pride and column of its social system in check, as well as deaths from the virus.

On Twitter, the Minister of Health, José Ángel Portal, warned this Friday about a “double threat”: “Facing a meteorological phenomenon of this nature, in the midst of the most complex epidemiological scenario that the country has experienced since the beginning of the pandemic, supposes a greater effort on the part of our Public Health system and of the entire population ”.

In the same social network, President Miguel Díaz-Canel called for “discipline and responsibility so as not to regret the loss of life.”

Cuba reported 82 deaths and 7,639 covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours, adding 4,902 deaths and 627,311 cases since March 2020, when the first people with the virus were registered in the country.

“The combined factors of wind, rain and sea can create complex situations for us,” the chief of staff of the DC, retired General Ramón Pardo Guerra, told Cuban television.

Thousands of evacuees

Under a cyclonic alert since the morning like the rest of the five western provinces of the country, including Havana, Pinar del Río is the current epicenter of the pandemic. This day reported 914 cases, followed by Havana, with 911.

In that province, where the electricity was cut off preventively before Ida’s arrival, some 10,500 people were evicted from risk areas to three evacuation centers or the homes of family and friends, according to provincial authorities.

Local television images showed dozens of fallen trees in La Coloma and other neighboring towns in Pinar del Río, caused by strong winds from the Ida, and a rough sea.

In Havana, where urban transport was suspended since noon, thousands of people were also evacuated, according to their authorities, and some areas reported power failure due to strong Ida winds.

According to local television reports, Ida caused “minor damage” to roof coverings and agriculture on the Isle of Youth.

Melissa Galbraith
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.