Hurricane Ida from space

Whether they rode out the storm by sheltering in place or evacuating residents to sister facilities, Louisiana senior living communities took precautions ahead of Hurricane Ida.

The Category 4 hurricane made landfall near Port Fourchon, LA, on Sunday, 16 years to the day after Hurricane Katrina hit. Ida maintained hurricane-force winds for almost 16 hours but was downgraded to a tropical storm as it moved through Mississippi. 

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency on Thursday ahead of the storm. Edwards announced on Sunday that 18 assisted living communities and 22 nursing homes in the storm’s path had been evacuated.

Brookdale Senior Living posted on Monday that although there are some phone and power outages in Mandeville, LA, residents and employees who sheltered in place at Brookdale Mandeville are doing well.

“The community was prepared with a generator, as well as water, food, medications and emergency supplies to care for residents,” the post read. “We continue to do what we can to help ensure the ongoing safety of our residents and associates.”

Lambeth House, a continuing care retirement community in New Orleans, posted Sunday that it was without power, but “residents are safe and comfortable.” There was no damage to the building and no flooding in the area.

St. James Place, a Baton Rouge CCRC, posted on its website that Ida passed just to the east of the campus, which had only minor damage. 

“Conditions are expected to improve throughout the day,” the post said. “We will now start the repair and clean up from the storm.”

St. Joseph Manor, a retirement community in Thibodaux, LA, made the decision Friday morning to evacuate all residents by nightfall. In a Monday Facebook post, the community stated that a majority of residents were home with family or friends, whereas eight residents were evacuated to Port Arthur, TX.

“The road to reopening may be a long one as we need to return to [assess] damages to the building. Deacon Brent blessed the building just four days prior to the storm,” the post read. “We believe in the power of prayer. We will work with our local and state agencies to open as soon as possible.”

Azalea Estates Assisted Living of New Iberia, LA, posted on Facebook on Monday that it was preparing to transition residents back to the community over the next few days after learning that the community weathered the storm without impact. Similarly, Villa Maria Retirement Center in Lake Charles, LA, posted Monday on its Facebook page that it was getting ready to welcome residents back on Tuesday after evacuating them ahead of Ida.

Other Louisiana senior living communities that evacuated residents included Maison Jardin Senior Living Community in Morgan City, Terrebonne Place Assisted Living in Houma and Garden View Assisted Living of New Iberia.

Monday, Dallas-based Buckner International, parent of Buckner Retirement Services, reported that it had donated 12 pallets of bottled water, Gatorade/Propel powder and hand sanitizer to TBM Disaster Relief, representing approximately 50% of supplies TBM took to aid in response to the damage in Southern Louisiana due to Hurricane Ida.

“We were blessed to have aid available at the Buckner Center for Humanitarian Aid that we could quickly provide to our friends at TBM,” Steve Watson, director of aid and assistance for Buckner, said in a blog post. “When we heard they were loading supplies at their facility, our team jumped into action to deliver these pallets as they were preparing to pull out.” 

The Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness in New Orleans reported that all eight transmission lines that deliver power into New Orleans were out of service on Monday. More than 1 million homes and businesses were without power on Monday across Louisiana and Mississippi. It could be six weeks before power is fully restored, according to reports