Thousands of Louisianans woke up early Monday morning to widespread flooding and devastation in the wake of Hurricane Ida, one of the strongest storms to hit the United States mainland in history.
In New Orleans, roads were blanketed with downed trees and roofing that had been stripped off buildings by Ida’s 120 mph winds. The hurricane had diminished to a tropical storm by early Monday, but the National Weather Service still warned of potentially life-threatening conditions and the threat of flash flooding as it moves north.
Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) said President Joe Biden had approved his request for a presidential major disaster declaration, opening up a pipeline of federal aid to the state as it recovers from the storm.
But the short-term aftermath of Ida already looks bleak in New Orleans, where the entire city remains without power after a “catastrophic” failure of the electricity grid. It’s unclear when power might be restored, but the Times-Picayune reported it could be days or even weeks before crews are able to repair the transmission towers.
At least one person died in Louisiana when a tree fell on his home about 30 miles south of Baton Rouge, authorities said.
Take a look at photos following Ida’s path through the state below.
Above: Theophilus Charles, 70, sits inside his house which was heavily damaged by Hurricane Ida in Houma, Louisiana, on Monday. Credit: Reuters/Adrees Latif
Dartanian Stovall looks at the house that collapsed with him inside during the height of Hurricane Ida in New Orleans, Louisiana, on Monday. Stovall said he was inside the house he was renovating on Lasalle Street in the Uptown neighborhood when the chimney collapsed and the rest of the house followed. He managed to crawl to safety.
Flooded streets and homes are shown on Monday in the Spring Meadow subdivision in LaPlace, Louisiana, after Hurricane Ida moved through. Hard-hit LaPlace is squeezed between the Mississippi River and Lake Pontchartrain.
New Orleans Police Detective Alexander Reiter looks over debris from a building that collapsed during Hurricane Ida in New Orleans on Monday. Hurricane Ida knocked out the power in all of New Orleans and inundated coastal Louisiana communities on a deadly path through the Gulf Coast that is still unfolding and promises more destruction.
Jacob Hodges, right, and his brother Jeremy Hodges work to clear debris from their storage unit that was destroyed by Hurricane Ida in Houma, Louisiana, on Monday.
Downtown business owner Pat Ring looks at some of the damage to businesses along Main Street in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida in Houma, Louisiana, on Monday.
Damaged vehicles in front of a building that collapsed during Hurricane Ida on Sunday in New Orleans.
Fran Tribe sits with her dog, Dave, outside a home destroyed by Hurricane Ida in Houma, Louisiana, on Aug. 30.
A man takes pictures of high waves along the shore of Lake Pontchartrain as Hurricane Ida nears New Orleans on Sunday.
A man passes by part of a roof that blew off of a building in the French Quarter in New Orleans on Sunday.
Downtown buildings relying on generator power are seen as the entire city of New Orleans remains without power on Monday.
The remains of the Buddy Bolden mural on the wall of The Little Gem Saloon are seen on S. Rampart St. in New Orleans on early Monday morning.
A shop suffers severe damage after Hurricane Ida pummeled New Orleans with strong winds on Monday.
Montegut Fire Chief Toby Henry walks back to his fire truck in the rain as firefighters cut through trees on the road in Bourg, Louisiana, as Hurricane Ida passes on Sunday.
A young girl blocks her face from the wind and rain produced by Hurricane Ida in New Orleans on Sunday.
Highway 51 is flooded on Monday after Hurricane Ida struck LaPlace, Louisiana.
Bourg Fire Chief TJ Pellegrin checks in with a couple to make sure they are OK in Bourg, Louisiana, on Sunday.
Members of a rescue team help evacuate people on Monday after Hurricane Ida made landfall in Laplace, Louisiana.
Utility workers resist the winds of Hurricane Ida on Sunday in New Orleans as they wait for the storm to pass so they can begin repairs.
Greg Nazarko, manager of the Bourbon Bandstand bar on Bourbon Street in New Orleans, stands outside the club on Monday. He rode out the storm there after Hurricane Ida knocked out power in the city.
A truck is seen in heavy winds and rain from Hurricane Ida in Bourg on Sunday.
A damaged home is shown in LaPlace, Louisiana, on Monday.
Lenny Richard of Houma, Louisiana, was sleeping when the wall fell in as his home was destroyed by Hurricane Ida.
Rescue personnel help residents of the Spring Meadow subdivision out of their flooded homes on a boat in LaPlace, Louisiana, on Monday.