Damage from Hurricane Ida seen from space (satellite photos)

Hurricane Ida’s trail of destruction is visible from space.

Ida made landfall near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, as a Category 4 hurricane on Sunday (Aug. 29), 16 years to the day after Hurricane Katrina hit the Bayou State. 

Ida featured sustained winds of around 150 mph (240 kph) when it came ashore, and its torrential rain and powerful storm surge caused flooding along much of the Louisiana coast. The hurricane is known to have killed two people, though that toll will almost certainly rise as rescue workers and cleanup crews make their way into more and more affected areas, experts say.

Hurricane Ida from space: Photos from astronauts and satellites

Ida also caused widespread power outages. More than one million people, including many folks in New Orleans, remained without electricity as of Tuesday (Aug. 31), The New York Times reported.

We’re now getting a bird’s-eye view of some of the damage Ida has wrought, thanks to before-and-after photos snapped by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite. The “after” shots, which WorldView-2 captured on Tuesday (Aug. 31), depict storm-battered Louisiana cities and towns such as Houma, Jean Lafitte and La Place.

The Aug. 31 photos of Houma and La Place, for example, show apartment complexes and other buildings with roofs torn to kindling by Ida’s fury. And floodwaters submerge the streets and yards of Jean Lafitte in another image taken that day.

Image 1 of 16

La Place, Louisiana, imaged by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite in late 2020. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 2 of 16

Buildings damaged by Hurricane Ida in the Louisiana town of La Place are seen in this photo captured by Maxar Technologies' WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021.

Buildings damaged by Hurricane Ida in La Place are seen in this photo captured by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 3 of 16

The Louisiana city of Houma pre-Ida.

The Louisiana city of Houma pre-Hurricane Ida, imaged by WorldView-2. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 4 of 16

Hurricane Ida damaged the roofs of buildings in Houma, Louisiana, as seen in this photo snapped by Maxar Technologies' WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021.

Hurricane Ida damaged the roofs of buildings in Houma, as seen in this photo snapped by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 5 of 16

The Louisiana town of Jean Lafitte before Hurricane Ida hit.

The Louisiana town of Jean Lafitte before Hurricane Ida hit, imaged by WorldView-2. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 6 of 16

Jean Lafitte, Louisiana, as it looked on Aug. 31, 2021.

Jean Lafitte as it looked to WorldView-2 on Aug. 31, 2021. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 7 of 16

A closeup of Jean Lafitte pre-Ida.

A closeup of Jean Lafitte pre-Ida, courtesy of WorldView-2. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 8 of 16

Much of the Louisiana town of Jean Lafitte remained underwater on Aug. 31, 2021, as shown in this photo captured by Maxar Technologies' WorldView-2 satellite.

Much of the Louisiana town of Jean Lafitte remained underwater on Aug. 31, 2021, as shown in this WorldView-2 photo. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 9 of 16

The Louisiana towns of Jean Lafitte and Barataria before Hurricane Ida hit, as imaged by Maxar Technologies' WorldView-2 satellite.

The Louisiana towns of Jean Lafitte and Barataria before Hurricane Ida hit, as imaged by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 10 of 16

Jean Lafitte and Barataria after Hurricane Ida hit, imaged by Maxar Technologies' WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021.

Jean Lafitte and Barataria after Hurricane Ida hit, imaged by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 11 of 16

Barataria, Louisiana, imaged in November 2020 by Maxar's WorldView-2 satellite.

Barataria, Louisiana, imaged in November 2020 by Maxar’s WorldView-2 satellite. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 12 of 16

Barataria, Louisiana, on Aug. 31, 2021, as seen by Maxar's WorldView-2 satellite.

Barataria on Aug. 31, 2021, as seen by WorldView-2. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 13 of 16

La Place, Louisiana, imaged in December 2020 by Maxar's WorldView-2 satellite.

La Place, Louisiana, imaged in December 2020 by Maxar’s WorldView-2 satellite. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 14 of 16

The same part of La Place, as seen on Aug. 31, 2021.

The same part of La Place, as seen on Aug. 31, 2021, by WorldView-2. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 15 of 16

A shopping center and other buildings in La Place in December 2020.

A shopping center and other buildings in La Place in December 2020. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)Image 16 of 16

Buildings damaged by Hurricane Ida in the Louisiana town of La Place are seen in this photo captured by Maxar Technologies' WorldView-2 satellite on Aug. 31, 2021.

The same La Place scene on Aug. 31, 2021, captured by Maxar’s WorldView-2 satellite. (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)

Click through the gallery above to see all of the before-and-after satellite photos.

Ida weakened into a tropical storm on Monday (Aug. 30) as it moved inland, and it has since been downgraded further to a tropical depression. But the storm has life yet as it churns north.

“As #Ida moves inland, heavy rainfall and flooding impacts are expected to spread across the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys, the central and southern Appalachians, and Mid-Atlantic through Wednesday,” the U.S. National Hurricane Center tweeted on Monday.

Much of the Louisiana town of Jean Lafitte remained under water on Aug. 31, 2021, as shown in this photo captured by Maxar Technologies’ WorldView-2 satellite.  (Image credit: ©2021 Maxar Technologies)

WorldView-2, which is owned by Maxar subsidiary DigitalGlobe, launched in October 2009. The satellite zooms around Earth at an altitude of 480 miles (770 kilometers) and is capable of resolving features as small as 18 inches (46 centimeters) on the planet’s surface.   

Mike Wall is the author of “Out There” (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a book about the search for alien life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or Facebook. 

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