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Joe Biden to view ‘unimaginable damage’ in Louisiana after hurricane Ida

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President Joe Biden will fly to New Orleans on Friday to view a city that is almost completely without power amid a frantic recovery effort to clear debris and turn on power amid oppressive heat.

And the president will visit some of the hardest hit areas south of LaFourche, Louisiana, where the Category 4 hurricane made landfall and ripped through structures and devastated entire communities.

His journey comes after Hurricane Ida ravaged Louisiana, before making its way through part of the country to cause massive flooding in the Northeast, causing more chaos and dozens of deaths. The severe flooding took residents of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York by surprise — and could divert national attention from the hard-hit coastal areas that took the storm’s first blow.

The trip will give Biden an opportunity to address the federal response and meet with local leaders — just days after he championed the chaotic evacuation from Afghanistan.

Homes destroyed in the wake of Hurricane Ida are shown on September 2, 2021 in Grand Isle, Louisiana. Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm near Grand Isle, southwest of New Orleans, on Aug. 29, causing widespread power outages, flooding and massive damage.

He will also take an area tour of some of the hardest hit communities, including Laffite, Grand Isle, Port Fourchon and Lafourche Parish, as he tours a neighborhood in LaPlace and delivers a speech.

Biden told the nation on Thursday he had “closely monitored” the devastation caused by Hurricane Ida after the Category 4 hurricane approached the Louisiana coast, bringing death and destruction as it made its way through Pennsylvania and New York. .

“While the catastrophic flooding wasn’t as severe as during Hurricane Katrina 16 years ago, Ida was so powerful that it literally caused the Mississippi River to change direction — the flow — change the flow temporarily,” Biden noted.

He said the “good news” is that the $15 billion levee system set up around New Orleans after catastrophic failures during Hurricane Katrina appears to have held up.

‘It held. It was strong. It worked,” he said. “But too many people and too many areas are still unprotected and saw storm surge and flooding that was devastating,” Biden said.

President Joe Biden flies to New Orleans on Friday to meet with local officials and the response to Hurricane Ida.  to watch

President Joe Biden flies to New Orleans on Friday to meet with local officials and the response to Hurricane Ida. to watch

A search and rescue team drives through standing water as they check homes destroyed in the wake of Hurricane Ida on Sept. 2, 2021 in Grand Isle, Louisiana.  Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm near Grand Isle, southwest of New Orleans, on Aug. 29, causing widespread power outages, flooding and massive damage.

A search and rescue team drives through standing water as they check homes destroyed in the wake of Hurricane Ida on Sept. 2, 2021 in Grand Isle, Louisiana. Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm near Grand Isle, southwest of New Orleans, on Aug. 29, causing widespread power outages, flooding and massive damage.

He pointed to winds of 170 miles and hours that he said had still not been confirmed by the FEMA “causing unimaginable damage, with debris and downed power lines making roads impassable and delaying response efforts to save people and property.”

Floods left a string of deaths in the northeast as waters raged in Philadelphia and even Biden’s hometown of Wilmington.

Biden said he will meet with Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards and several parish presidents as he reviews disaster relief.

Homes destroyed in the wake of Hurricane Ida are shown on September 2, 2021 in Grand Isle, Louisiana.  Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm near Grand Isle, southwest of New Orleans, on Aug. 29, causing widespread power outages, flooding and massive damage.

Homes destroyed in the wake of Hurricane Ida are shown on September 2, 2021 in Grand Isle, Louisiana. Ida made landfall as a Category 4 storm near Grand Isle, southwest of New Orleans, on Aug. 29, causing widespread power outages, flooding and massive damage.

Link Restaurant Group CEO Michael DiSimone prepares meat for barbecue to give to people for free as power continues to cut most of the city after Hurricane Ida swept through the state in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. September 2021 raged

Link Restaurant Group CEO Michael DiSimone prepares meat for barbecue to give to people for free as power continues to cut most of the city after Hurricane Ida swept through the state in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. September 2021 raged

An official in Jefferson Parish says a cell tower supplying power to New Orleans and the east bank of the parish has collapsed into the river near Bridge City.  The Parish Emergency Management Director says cables have been stretched across the Mississippi

An official in Jefferson Parish says a cell tower supplying power to New Orleans and the east bank of the parish has collapsed into the river near Bridge City. The Parish Emergency Management Director says cables have been stretched across the Mississippi

Louisiana Gov.  John Bel Edwards speaks at press conference In the wake of Hurricane Ida Wednesday, September 1, 2021 in Gretna, La.  He will meet Biden

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards speaks at press conference In the wake of Hurricane Ida Wednesday, September 1, 2021 in Gretna, La. He will meet Biden

“Governor Edwards encouraged me to come and assured me that the visit will not disrupt the recovery efforts at the site. I wanted to make sure of that,” said Biden, who appears to be skipping the hard-hit communities in southern Louisiana, where people are still digging and assessing massive damage.

He ran into trouble when he flew to Surfside Florida earlier this summer to inspect the damage after the tragic collapse of Champlain Towers South. There was a shift on the rubble while Biden was at a hotel a few blocks away, and the president visited a memorial wall rather than the crash site itself.

During that visit, Biden met with local leaders, including Florida Republican government Ron DeSantis, his counterpart in a coronavirus feud.

“We’re not going anywhere. Tell me what you need,” he told the assembled leaders, including DeSantis, who praised the federal effort.

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