University students fear power outages ahead of Hurricane Sally


National Hurricane Center

Erin Haynes

As hurricane Sally approaches New Orleans, local university students are scrambling to prepare for the sudden hurricane by visiting grocery stores, staying up to date with universities’ protocols and bracing for potential power outages.

The hurricane’s path changed trajectory in the Gulf and minor impact is expected to reach Southeast Louisiana, but its slow pace is expected to cause “immense flooding,” WWLTV reports. 

The heaviest amount of rainfall could be two feet, according to WWLTV. Local universities have cancelled classes on Sept. 15 to keep students safe from the tropical weather. 

“Well I’m from here, so hurricanes aren’t too bad for me, I guess. But this one, we are going to feel it. It’s not going to be like Hurricane Laura how they thought it was going to hit us bad. We are going to feel this one,” said Xavier University psychology pre-med student Nabria Charles. 

Charles believes her mother’s organizational skills helped her prepare for the hurricane, and she bought food and supplies from a grocery store in preparation for the storm. 

“ I got flashlights, groceries, batteries, battery powered fans. I got all of it, everything,” said Charles. 

While Charles is confident about facing the hurricane, Loyola history and Latin American studies sophomore Rue Fernandez feels nervous about her first tropical storm experience. 

“I’m originally from Minnesota, so I’m not used to hurricane season, but my roommate and I got a bunch of food and groceries so I feel pretty prepared but not entirely sure what’s going to happen,” said Fernandez. 

Unlike Fernandez, Tulane freshman and New Orleans native, Caroline Bear, said she is prepared if power outages occur. 

“I definitely have a lot of back-up chargers and a lot of my stuff is pre-charged and everything. If the power goes out, I don’t know. But I don’t have that much homework tonight and will probably be watching Netflix with friends anyway. I’m going to take it as it comes,” said Bear. 

But no electricity is worrisome for professors like Loyola’s Cathy Rogers, who are unsure of the damage the hurricane is expected to make. Rogers hopes power outages don’t occur, in order for students to continue to attend her public relations courses online.

“I haven’t really planned past Tuesday because I’m pretty optimistic that we’ll all be here on Wednesday. Now what will happen on Wednesday, if we have a long evacuation like we did for Katrina or something else? I will be honest, If people don’t have power and can’t get to Canvas or to Zoom, I’m not sure anybody’s prepared for that,” said Rogers.