Updated Aug. 31, 12:30 p.m. ET.
Hurricane Ida’s flooding and wicked winds have led to impassable roads in many parts of southeastern Louisiana. High water as well as trees, power lines and other debris have forced law enforcement and other officials to close entire roads or sections of roads across the region.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development’s (DOTD) 511 website was reporting “widespread road closures” in the southeastern part of the state as of midday Monday. Sections of Interstate 10 in the New Orleans area, as well as several I-10 ramps, were shut down.
The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, which connects Metairie, Louisiana, to Lake Pontchartrain’s northern shore, has been closed since late Sunday morning. An alternate route is the I-10 twin span bridge that connects New Orleans to Slidell, Louisiana.
U.S. Highway 90 from Bay St. Louis to Biloxi, Mississippi, is also closed, mainly due to flooding. This is according to the Mississippi Department of Transportation. In Alabama, the Battleship Parkway Causeway (U.S. Highway 98) is closed in the Mobile area. The I-10 eastbound ramp to the Battleship Parkway Causeway is also closed, according to the Alabama Department of Transportation.
Ida slammed the Gulf Coast as a Category 4 hurricane late Sunday morning, making landfall in Louisiana. It has weakened to a tropical storm since moving inland, but a tropical storm warning and storm surge warning remain posted Monday for parts of the Gulf Coast, from the mouth of the Pearl River to the Alabama-Florida border.
Heavy rain and flooding will continue in parts of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, with an additional 4 to 8 inches of rain possible Monday. This would be on top of the radar-estimated 15 to 20 inches of rain that have accumulated so far.
Ida is forecast to weaken further to a tropical depression later Monday. The storm will head to the Tennessee and Ohio valleys Tuesday into Wednesday, dumping 3 to 6 inches of rain in some areas. Localized flash flooding is possible. By Thursday the remnants of Ida will be in the mid-Atlantic.
Isolated tornadoes and severe thunderstorm winds could pop up quickly Monday as energy lags behind Ida. This will impact areas from Mobile and the western Florida Panhandle northward to the Interstate 20 corridor in Alabama. This threat shifts eastward Tuesday, potentially affecting drivers from the central Florida Panhandle to the Atlanta area.
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