Shape-shifting storms like Ida are cities’ worst nightmare

Source: The Verge

With less time to act as climate change churns up more rapidly intensifying storms like Hurricane Ida, coastal communities might have to rethink how they prepare for future storms. They could be forced to make tough decisions before a threat even fully materializes. Or they might take cues from how cities prepare for other types of disasters.

Ida grew monstrous overnight. In less than a day, its wind speed jumped from 85 to 150 miles per hour, making it the fifth strongest storm to land in the mainland US. After Ida pummeled Louisiana for hours over the weekend, “virtually no one” had electricity in the state Monday morning, Gov. John Bel Edwards said in a video posted to Twitter. Some places are under boil water advisories with water treatment systems out of commission. “We have tremendous damage to homes and businesses, we know that individuals are out there waiting to be rescued,” Edwards said.

Ida’s rapid intensification outpaced authorities’ abilities to get everyone in the storm’s path out of the way. And shape-shifting storms like Ida make it more difficult for forecasters and officials to convey just how much risk residents face.



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