NEW ORLEANS — Hurricane Ida caused more damage to Louisiana’s power grid than hurricanes Katrina, Delta and Zeta combined, according to Entergy.
The company confirmed Sunday more than 30,000 utility poles, nearly 35,000 spans of wire and 5,600 transformers were compromised during the storm.
The damage resulted in 900,000 Entergy customers losing power across southeast Louisiana. It was last reported nearly 350,000 customers have power.
Meanwhile, some of the damage is still being assessed. Unlike Hurricane Katrina, which caused down power lines in multiples states, Entergy officials said the damage from Hurricane Ida is almost exclusive to Louisiana.
Currently, more than 27,000 restoration workers from 41 states are working together on repairs, officials said.
The biggest challenge: replacing 24,000 utility poles that help deliver electricity from substations to homes and businesses.
The local terrain hasn't made repair efforts any easier.
Entergy said many of the distribution poles are situated around marshes, swamps, rivers and heavily wooded areas. Working through damage from the storm is another obstacle, the company said.
Entergy is using special equipment, such as helicopters and drones, to locate damaged infrastructure. They're also relying on air boats and marsh buggies to access waterways and rear-ally machines to maneuver tight spaces in residential areas.
“The widespread damage and impact inflicted by Hurricane Ida was felt by so many across Louisiana,” said Phillip May, CEO of Entergy Louisiana. “We are overcoming new challenges each day, and our storm team will march forward until we’ve brought the lights back to all of the communities we serve.”