Storm-ravaged Louisiana takes stock of Delta damage

Hurricane Delta landed as a Category 2 storm

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After Hurricane Delta ripped through Louisiana on Friday, residents, having waited out the storm elsewhere, returned on Sunday to survey damage to their homes.

Delta made landfall near the town of Creole on Friday evening as a Category 2 hurricane, packing sustained winds of 100 miles per hour (160 km per hour).

Read More: Delta adds insult to injury in hurricane-ravaged Louisiana

The National Hurricane Center said the storm had weakened to a post-tropical cyclone by Sunday, but continued to be a heavy rainfall threat.

Adding to the damage from the more powerful Hurricane Laura, which devastated the region in August, the storm knocked out power for more than half a million residents.

According to Reuters, Gerard Meschwitz, 62, returned to Lake Charles Sunday morning after evacuating to Houston for the storm. His roof had previously been torn up by Laura, and to his dismay, Delta had damaged it even more.

Sam Jones, 77, who waited out the storm in his Lake Charles home, planned to head out Sunday and stay with his son in Fort Worth, Texas. The trip was necessary because his electricity that had only recently been restored after Laura, was out once again.

An aerial view of flood waters from Hurricane Delta surrounding structures destroyed by Hurricane Laura (R) on October 10, 2020 in Creole, Louisiana. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

“I don’t see any electricity coming back anytime soon, so I’m going to give them about a week and then come back,” Jones said. “When you can’t put any air on it puts you to where you don’t get a good night sleep.”

Many residents in Lake Charles and elsewhere left ahead of the storm. According to Catherine Heitman, spokesperson for the Department of Children and Family Services, 9,109 Louisianans were still in shelters, and more than 8,200 evacuees were in hotels and in the Alexandria “mega” shelter, as of Sunday morning.

Read More: Hurricane Laura destroys Confederate monument after officials vote to keep it

Insured losses from Delta are estimated to be approximately $2 billion, while Laura’s losses were estimated at around $10 billion, including over $2 billion to offshore energy production facilities, said Steve Bennett, chief product officer for the Demex Group, a technology company.

Bennett went on to say that insured losses from natural catastrophes have been rising steadily over the past several decades, as a result of climate change and population growth.

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