NEW ORLEANS – Here is a statement from Michael Sawaya, president of the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, regarding the condition of the facility following the impacts of Hurricane Ida:
âStarting at noon on September 2, 2021, while temporarily under pressure, the Convention Center began supporting agencies responding to the impact of Hurricane Ida. The City of New Orleans, the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security, the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH), and the Louisiana National Guard (LANG) had specific missions underway or were considering using the ‘installation. To note in particular:
- LDH’s Special Medical Needs Monitoring Station opened on September 4 to accommodate up to 500 patients who depend on oxygen and electricity for issues such as dialysis and heart monitoring. The Special Needs Medical Watch Station is not open to the general public and will not accept appointments or cars. Patients will be sorted and taken to another center for continued care.
- Transportation assistance from specific locations throughout the city will depart from the convention center to shelters in northern Louisiana or neighboring states, for residents who wish to temporarily leave the impact of Hurricane Ida . Transportation to the shelters will operate daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. or until the daily maximum is reached. For the important steps to follow, go to //ready.nola.gov/shelterbus.
- The Louisiana National Guard, stationed at the Convention Center since the start of the storm, continues to use the Convention Center for critical search and rescue missions in southeast Louisiana and the ongoing recovery.
As of September 3, 2021, Entergy has fully restored power to the convention center to support these ongoing critical missions.
Note that the Convention Center is unable to provide information on the number of citizens accommodated in the monitoring station for medical needs or those transported to and from the establishment to various shelters outside the metro of the New Orleans. Please direct all questions regarding these efforts to the appropriate city and state emergency management officials.
The Convention Center suffered water infiltration and minor roof damage. We have a contract catering business that has been activated and work is underway to get us back into full service as soon as possible.
We contacted our Convention Center employees to verify their safety and location. Like all of our neighbors and friends, we know there is a lot of work to be done after the difficult events of this week. We will work with the city and the state to do our part to bring our community back again. The determination and heart of our region are at the heart of the reasons why so many people around the world love our city and our state. We look forward to welcoming them back in due time. â