Officials urge public to hunker down, stay in place during Hurricane Ida

Published 5:47 pm Sunday, August 29, 2021

NATCHEZ — Mayor Dan Gibson, Police Chief Joseph Daughtry, Fire Chief Robert Arrington, Adams County Sheriff Travis Patten and Adams County Board of Supervisors President Angela Hutchins urged the public to take precaution for Hurricane Ida at a press conference Sunday afternoon.

Daughtry said officials want the citizens of Natchez and Adams County to be safe and prepared for Ida. Gibson said the group has been working for several days on a plan to handle Ida.

“We have been watching all of the models, and there is an indication that Ida will arrive here sometime around 9 p.m.,” Gibson said. “We will have sustained winds for a time of up to 70 to 80 miles per hour. Ida will continue over our area. The eye should pass over between 12 and 2 a.m.”

The worst time will be from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m., so Natchez has imposed a curfew, he said. Everyone who is in the area needs to have their preparations done and be home by 8 p.m.

Everyone is asked to stay off of roads during the curfew until noon Monday, he said. People are discouraged from sightseeing in the case of downed trees and power lines.

“The best advice we can give is to hunker down and take care of your loved ones,” Gibson said.

Patten urged people to take Ida seriously and asked residents to stay at home. He said first responders would respond to calls as they can, but they do not want to be in a dangerous situation.

“We are asking people to use common sense during this time,” Patten said. “We do not need to be spending time dealing with people who are out sightseeing and taking photos.”

The biggest threat for Natchez is wind, Gibson said. Natchez has a lot of old trees which are prone to falling in high winds. He said people should go to the safe room if they live in a mobile home or in an area where trees pose a threat.

The safe room is at 323 Liberty Road in Natchez and will remain open until 8 p.m. Those who need oxygen or electricity for medical reasons should go to the Safe Room, he said.

Patten said people do not need to be vaccinated for COVID-19 to go to the safe room.