NEW ORLEANS — As morning dawned the day after two tornadoes touched down, people in the New Orleans area awoke on Wednesday to survey the heavily damaged homes and debris-filled streets left in its path.
The National Weather ServiceIt was confirmed Wednesday morning that two tornadoes had struck the area on Tuesday night: one in Lacombe, north-eastern of the city, and another in St. Bernard Parish. Both were responsible for at least one death and many more being taken to hospital. State police, the National Guard and other rescuers spent the night combing through the debris to find any trapped residents.
“We don’t know how many and we don’t know the severity of the injuries at this time,” Guy McInnis, the president of St. Bernard Parish, said in an interview as officials were struggling to determine the number of people displaced or hurt and the extent of the damage.
“There are houses that are missing,” said James Pohlmann, the sheriff of St. Bernard Parish. “One landed in the middle of the street.”
Aaron Ledet, 44 years old, heard the wind and went to the bathroom. “I just put my family in the bathtub and prayed,” he said. After the winds had stopped, he went out to find another house that had been blown into the middle of the street. He was a search and rescuer while serving in the U.S Navy. He said that he helped to rescue a girl who had lost her oxygen tank.
Similar scenes were seen in St. Bernard Parish on Tuesday night. The scene was similar to the one in St. Bernard Parish. Neighbors who helped each other during Hurricane Katrina, 2005, flooded every house in the community. “We have a long road ahead of us with this recovery,” Mr. McInnis of St. Bernard Parish said at a news conference late Tuesday night.
Callie Marshall, 22, had just applied a mud mask to her face when she heard “lots of wind coming fast.” Her house in St. Bernard Parish started shaking. The tiles she had just used to shower started flying off her wall. As her 2-year-old son Luke was being held by her, she sat next to the toilet. The funnel cloud flew over her house, bringing down an oak tree and flattening another house on the block.
The tornado was caused by a strong spring storm system that moved through the Deep South. Just hours before the tornado struck, Gov. John Bel Edwards of Louisiana closed many state officesSchools in Mississippi and Louisiana adjusted their schedules to accommodate the weather.
The same storm system was moving East on Wednesday, and the weather service said the threat of severe weather and flooding “should wane somewhat.” Nearly 100,000 people were without power at some point across Texas, Mississippi and Louisiana on Tuesday, according to according to PowerOutage.us, a website that aggregates data from utilities across the United States. Much had been restored by Wednesday afternoon.
A tornado watch was in effect for parts of the Florida Panhandle as well as Southeastern Alabama until Wednesday morning.
New Orleans was last hit by a tornado in February 2017. The National Weather Service estimated that winds could reach 150 miles per hour. The storm caused damage to more than 600 homes, and left 33 people injured.
Source: NY Times