A “Hurricane Watch” is in effect for the Gulf of Mexico states, which include Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama because ‘Ida’ is predicted to make landfall as a Category 3 storm. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) predicts that Ida will be a major hurricane because the warm water in the region will rapidly intensify her in less than 24 hours. Ida is expected to make landfall Sunday. Her expected wind speed could be over 100 mph and the storm surge is predicted to be 10-15 feet. The coastal region could get up to 20 inches of rain. What do you need to do to get ready: Prepare now by understanding evacuation guidelines, evacuation routes, and the locations of shelters. Red Cross shelters will open on Saturday and residents must adhere to the CDC’s social distancing requirements for congregate gatherings during the COVID-19. Listen to local officials for mandatory evacuations that will likely be given in the coming hours as Ida barrows her way toward the U.S. People in areas prone to flooding are urged to evacuate early and know your evacuation route. Local officials have sand is available to prepare Sandbags to protect your property. Check back next week for more helpful tips on how to keep you, your family, and friend safe during Hurricane Season and COVID-19. Stay safe.