More than 250,000 homes in metro Baton Rouge were without power Monday afternoon after Hurricane Ida’s powerful winds tore through Southeast Louisiana.
It could be a while before power comes back for thousands of people. Entergy said its too soon to say when restoration will start to happen, because it could take several days to assess the extent of damages.
According to Entergy, more than 175,000 customers in East Baton Rouge, Ascension and Livingston parishes didn’t have power as of Monday afternoon. The utility company said earlier in the day about 80% of its customers in East Baton Rouge are without power.
Dr. Craig Greene, chairman of the Louisiana Public Service Commission, said one of Entergy's two main transmission lines in Baton Rouge, which feed electricity from generating plants into substations was knocked out by Ida. If the second line had failed, Greene said about 95% of the city would be without power. The widespread outages across the area were caused more by trees and limbs damaging the lines that distribute power from the substations to homes and businesses, he said.
Statewide, about 818,000 Entergy households don’t have power, including all of Orleans and Jefferson parishes, where transmission lines were ripped down Sunday by Ida.
Demco said as of Monday afternoon, more than 78,000 customers across metro Baton Rouge were without power. That represents about 63% of the customers served by the utility and includes about 30,000 homes and businesses in Livingston, more than 26,000 in East Baton Rouge and nearly 15,000 in Ascension.
At the peak of Hurricane Ida, Demco had more than 106,000 customers without electricity. But the utility co-op said it expects repairs and restoration will be “a week(s) long process."
More than a million people are without power statewide, Gov. John Bel Edwards told the Today Show on Monday morning.
"It really isn't a million people without power. It's a million accounts. So that's homes and businesses," Edwards said. "And so my guess is, it's probably closer to two million people without power right now."
Capitol News Bureau Editor Mark Ballard contributed to this report.