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Lights Back For 95% Of New Orleans, But Many In Southeast Louisiana Are Still In The Dark

Courtesy of NOLA Ready

More than 95% of New Orleans now has power back, Entergy officials said Thursday, but about 220,000 customers of Louisiana's largest utility are still without power 11 days after Hurricane Ida made landfall.

Flood-prone parts of the city like Venetian Isles, neighborhoods in Orleans Parish that were severely damaged by Ida, will have to wait longer for electricity. But Entergy moved up the timetable for when the vast majority of those customers should have power restored from the end of the month to September 15.

Parishes along the gulf hit hardest by the storm, including Lafourche and Terrebonne, will likely still have to wait until September 29 for electricity, according to Entergy.

The utility has suspended late fees and disconnects indefinitely after Ida. While some people on social media have pointed to high bills they’ve recently received from Entergy, the company said most bills shouldn’t reflect the period after Ida made landfall and are likely high due to August’s heat.

Bills will likely go up due to Ida, with residents covering at least some of the cost to repair the grid after the storm. But Entergy said any rate hikes are likely more than a year away.

Some people in Louisiana might also still be without power due to damage to their homes. The utility said those homeowners and landlords will likely need to hire a licensed electrician to make repairs before Entergy can safely deliver power.

While most of New Orleans has power back, it’s not a guarantee the lights will stay on. Entergy said debris and tree limbs loosened by Ida are being picked up by recent bad weather and damaging the grid again. The company also has temporarily turned off power to some areas so it can make repairs elsewhere.

New Orleanians have been frustrated by the new outages along with inaccurate information they’ve received from Entergy informing them that power has been restored to their home even though the lights still won’t turn on.

Some Parishes have also had their repair timetables pushed back. Ascension and Livingston were supposed to have electricity for 90% of customers by Tuesday, but Entergy has changed those dates to Sept. 9 and 13 respectively.

Here are the latest predictions from Entergy for restoring power to 90% of customers in these parishes:

  • Ascension Parish, Sept. 9
  • Assumption Parish, Sept. 22
  • Iberville Parish, Sept. 9
  • Lafourche Parish, Sept. 29
  • Livingston Parish, Sept. 13
  • Lower Jefferson Parish, Sept. 29
  • Plaquemines Parish, Sept. 29 (Belle Chasse on Sept. 10)
  • St. Charles Parish, Sept. 29
  • St. James Parish, Sept. 17
  • St. John Parish, Sept. 17
  • St. Tammany Parish, Sept. 10
  • Tangipahoa Parish, Sept. 17
  • Terrebonne Parish, Sept. 29
  • Washington Parish, Sept. 10

Support for the Coastal Desk comes from the Walton Family Foundation, the Greater New Orleans Foundation, and local listeners.

Stephan Bisaha is the wealth and poverty reporter for the Gulf States Newsroom, a regional collaboration between NPR and member stations in Alabama (WBHM), Mississippi (MPB) and Louisiana (WWNO and WRKF). He reports on the systemic drivers of poverty in the region and economic development.

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