Hundreds of specially trained personnel from across the tri-state are on their way to Louisiana where a Category 4 storm has made landfall the same date Hurricane Katrina devastated the region 16 years earlier.
Hurricane Ida made landfall on the Louisiana coastline minutes before noon on Saturday with maximum sustained winds at 150 mph. Weather forecasters are predicting life-threatening storm surges and longstanding problems for the people in the path of the hurricane.
At the time it hit land, Hurricane Ida tied as the fifth-strongest hurricane to ever hit mainland U.S.
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To assist in rescue efforts in the wake of what's expected to be devastating aftermath, FEMA said more than 2,400 employees have been deployed to the Gulf Coast states. Among those teams is New York Task Force 1.
On Sunday, the team of 83 members were preparing to deploy to the region to assist with response and recovery. The team, managed by the city's Emergency Management Department, is comprised of FDNY and NYPD members that have undergone specialized training. NY-TF1 is one of 28 FEMA teams across the country ready to deploy within six hours notice.
"New York Task Force 1 specializes in urban search and rescue, disaster recovery, and emergency triage and medicine," according to a statement announcing NY-TF1's deployment.
They'll join a team from New Jersey also deployed to help with search and rescue efforts. New Jersey Task Force 1 was activated Saturday as part of the National Urban Search & Rescue Response System.
Power outages are already starting to cause problems for hundreds of thousands of residents in the state. Hours after landfall, more than 200,000 customers in the New Orleans area were already without power.
The tri-state response includes dozens of utility workers who
Jersey Central Power & Light had teams on the road by Sunday, headed to work on the increasing outage problems sweeping the southern states. A spokesperson for the company confirmed more than 80 team members and contractors were dispatched to help Entergy Louisiana.
Con Edison also has a team of 40 workers headed to the region.
By Monday, a team of 40 Eversource line crews from Connecticut and neighboring New England states will head south as well.