Hurricane Ida makes landfall in Louisiana as Category 4 storm

Hurricane Ida made landfall as an “extremely dangerous” Category 4 storm on Sunday afternoon, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

Ida made landfall near Port Fourchon, La., just before 1 p.m. ET with sustained winds of 150 mph, according to a tweet from the NHC. The storm’s minimum central pressure is 930 mb.

The NHC also said that sustained winds of 43 mph and a gust to 67 mph were reported in the past hour at Lakefront Airport in New Orleans.

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A tidal gauge in Shell Beach, La., recently reported a water level of 6.4 feet, according to the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration's National Ocean Service.

At Bay Waveland Yacht Club in Mississippi, a water level of 5.5 feet was reported. 

Hurricane Ida was elevated to a Category 4 storm early Sunday, hours before making landfall.

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The NHC said earlier that the storm was “expected to be an extremely major hurricane when it makes landfall,” adding that “rapid weakening” would likely happen afterward.

The storm was traveling northwest at 15 mph in the northern Gulf of Mexico.

Ida’s landfall comes exactly 16 years after Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana, leaving the state grappling with extensive damage.

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) on Sunday said modeling shows the state’s $14 billion levee system should hold during the storm, adding that he feels “very good about what’s inside the hurricane reduction system.”

Edwards did, however, say Hurricane Ida will be a “tremendous test” for the systems the state has implemented.

He also said the hurricane is “a very difficult storm.”

The state’s preparation for the hurricane was made more difficult because of the pandemic, as Louisiana is seeing an uptick in COVID-19 cases.

Edwards said the storm is “going to test us in ways that we've not been tested before, for a lot of reasons, but this COVID situation is certainly one of them.”