Hurricane Ida continues to strengthen as it crosses the Gulf of Mexico.

According to the National Hurricane Center, Ida is now a Category 2 storm with maximum sustained winds of 100 miles per hour. The hurricane is expected to attain Category 4 strength and maximum sustained winds of 140 miles per hour before making landfall south of Houma on Sunday.

Hurricane warnings remain posted for the Louisiana coast from Intracoastal City to the mouth of the Mississippi River. Hurricane watches remain posted from Intracoastal City to Cameron.

As of the 1 p.m. update, Ida is located at 25.5 North, 86.6 West. That's about 380 miles southeast of Houma.

The track remains steady. Ida is moving northwest at 16 miles per hour with landfall expected Sunday afternoon in Terrebonne Parish.

The National Hurricane Center says Acadiana could see winds as high as 110 miles per hour as the storm pushes onshore. The National Weather Service's hazardous weather statement for the Acadiana region has this warning for the residents of South Central Louisiana and Southeastern Louisiana:

Protect against life-threatening wind having possible devastating impacts across South-Central Louisiana and portions of East-Central Louisiana in vicinity of the Atchafalaya River Basin. Potential impacts in this area include:
- Structural damage to sturdy buildings, some with complete roof and wall failures. Complete destruction of mobile homes. Damage greatly accentuated by large airborne projectiles. Locations may be uninhabitable for weeks or months.
- Numerous large trees snapped or uprooted along with fences and roadway signs blown over.
- Many roads impassable from large debris, and more within urban or heavily wooded places. Many bridges and access routesimpassable.
- Widespread power and communications outages.

A mandatory evacuation order is in place for St. Mary Parish SOUTH of the Intracoastal Waterway. This includes Burns Point and Cypremort Point. The rest of St. Mary Parish, Iberia Parish, Lower St. Martin Parish, Jeff Davis Parish, and Acadia Parishes are under voluntary evacuation orders.

If you are planning to evacuate today, head north. Traffic on Interstate 10 West in Acadiana and the Lake Charles region is heavy. Eastbound traffic on Interstates 10 and 12 in the southeastern part of the state is also heavy as residents there flee towards Mississippi. If you do travel towards Texas or Mississippi, consider taking an alternate route.

 

Governor John Bel Edwards had this to say after the 1 p.m advisory.

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