A tornado tore through the New Orleans metro area and suburbs, causing property damage, and killing at least one person on Tuesday night.
The tornado hit both the Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans and St. Bernard Parish, communities devastated by Hurricane Katrina 17 years ago.
Sheriff Jimmy Pohlmann said that rescue workers searched the suburban parish for more people in need of assistance. Guy McInnis, President of St. Bernard Parish, declared that the tornado caused widespread damage around the parish.
“There’s widespread damage from where it touched down. There’s heavy damage to multiple structures in the area, they have multiple injuries in the area,” Pohlmann said in a news conference at 10 p.m. local time.
Pohlmann confirmed the death, but no further information was immediately available. Parish officials said there were no reports of anyone going missing.
The tornado caused widespread damage in parts of New Orleans and neighboring areas, and another tornado was confirmed north of Lake Pontchartrain.
The hardest-hit areas are Arabi, St. Bernard Parish, and the neighboring Lower 9th Ward.
Michelle Malasovich, a resident in Arabi, said she had been worried about her family that lives in areas north of Louisiana that were also getting hit by bad weather. She was texting with her family there when she said that all of a sudden, the lights started flickering.
“It just kept getting louder and louder,” Malasovich said of the storm’s approach.
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell tweeted late Tuesday that there were no reports of casualties or significant damage within the city and that the power utility was working to restore electricity.
In the three parishes surrounding New Orleans, approximately 13,000 homes and businesses were reported to have no power or electricity. Entergy reported that approximately 3,700 people were still without power as of early Wednesday morning.
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