Hurricane Ida

2021 | August 31 – September 24, 2021

On August 29, 2021, Hurricane Ida made landfall near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, as a Category 4 hurricane with sustained winds of 150 mph. It caused life-threatening storm surges, wind damage, heavy rainfall, and power outages that affected approximately one million homes and businesses along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

The storm then traveled northeast as a tropical depression, causing flash flooding, tornadoes, and power outages, before exiting offshore.

During Hurricane Ida’s widespread geographic impact, collection and analysis of timely data were necessary to understand regional differences, such as causes and circumstances of death. These data were also necessary to guide public health messaging to promote action.

stormy skies

In response to the disaster, CDC’s Epidemiology Surveillance Task Force activated media mortality surveillance to track online reports of deaths related to Hurricane Ida. Team members compiled and coded the information from identified sources (e.g., news media articles, press releases, and social media posts) into a database. They also analyzed the compiled data and shared results with emergency response leadership and health communicators to provide situational awareness and guide messaging.