At least four people have died in Louisiana and Mississippi in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida, while search and rescue efforts continue for possible victims, especially in flooded and isolated areas where some resisted evacuation.
Two people were killed and ten injured on Monday night near Lucedale (Mississippi) due to an accident on a highway that collapsed and in which some seven vehicles were involved.
Authorities, who have not identified the victims, told CNN that the accident was possibly due to rain associated with Ida.
The cars went into a 6-meter long and 15-meter deep hole created during the passage of Ida.
Another fatality from the hurricane, which made landfall Sunday in southern Louisiana, was a man who drowned Monday while driving his vehicle through a flooded roadway in New Orleans.
The Louisiana Department of Health said the man, whom it did not identify, died near I-10 and West End Boulevard.
The agency had announced Sunday the death of another 60-year-old man after a tree fell on his home in Ascencion County, in the Baton Rouge metropolitan area, Louisiana’s capital.
Both U.S. President Joe Biden and Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards announced Monday that more fatalities are expected from the cyclone as search and rescue efforts continue, especially in areas that have been cut off by flooding.
Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser told NBC News today that many people remained in areas that were devastated by flooding such as Grand Isle and Latiffe.
Ida, which dissipated Monday to a tropical depression, left flooding, power outages, completely isolated areas, destruction of infrastructure and road blockages.
The most affected area was southeastern Louisiana, where at least 1.1 million customers remain without power on Tuesday, including the entire city of New Orleans.
The lack of service, which in some areas is expected to take days or even weeks to be restored, worries local authorities because of the heat and the saturation of hospitals due to the pandemic.
Governor Edwards said the cyclone’s “catastrophic” impact means a long-term recovery.
Ida made landfall around midday Sunday at Port Fourchon, an oil port on the southern tip of Louisiana, and then made landfall again very close by at Galliano.