Ida fell to a tropical depression over Mississippi on Monday, a day after wreaking havoc on southern Louisiana on the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s arrival, forecasters said.
Ida had maximum sustained winds of 35 mph and was located 80 miles north-northwest of Jackson, Miss., according to a 10 p.m. CDT report from the National Hurricane Center. It was heading northeast at 10 mph.
Ida grew from a Category 2 to a Category 4 hurricane in two hours early Sunday morning. It was downgraded to a Category 2 hurricane by late Sunday, and by Monday, it was downgraded to a Category 1 storm, then a tropical storm.
Despite the weakening, the NHC expects severe rain and flooding to persist across areas of the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys overnight and into Tuesday.
“Flood and flash flood watches extend from the Gulf Coast region across the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys, central and southern Appalachians, into the northern Mid-Atlantic and southern New England,” the forecaster said.
The storm is expected to track across the Middle Tennessee Valley, Ohio Valley, and Mid-Atlantic through Wednesday, according to the forecast.
“Little change in strength is forecast during the next 48 hours,” the NHC said.
After Elsa, Grace, and Henri, Ida is the fourth storm in the Atlantic basin to reach hurricane intensity this year. Tropical storm strength was reached by Ana, Bill, Claudette, Danny, and Fred. Ida, however, would be only the second storm to make landfall after Grace.