[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
The dangers don’t end when the storm is over. A Louisiana couple was hit with that harsh truth when a wife had to watch her husband get attacked by an alligator in the floodwaters of Hurricane Ida.
According to reports, the 71-year-old man had waded into just four feet of water on the ground level of his Avery Estates home on Monday to check on his shed. At that time, his wife, who is in her 60s, said she heard a fuss outside, so she went downstairs to see what was going on. That’s when she saw her husband in the jaws of a huge gator.
The woman courageously dashed to his side and even managed to fight off the large predator. She then dragged her injured husband back onto the steps and called 911 — but because of a problem with the emergency system, the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office was unable to respond right away.
Related: Al Roker EXPLODES At Viewers Who Say He’s ‘Too Old’ To Cover Hurricane Ida!
After a quick search for first aid supplies in the house, the woman realized how badly her husband was injured, so she instead decided to take out her canoe and make the mile journey to higher ground in order to get help. Once she returned, however, her husband had vanished — leaving behind only a pool of blood. The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office said:
“When deputies got out there, they noticed a large amount of blood and learned from his spouse that the body was no longer present.”
Authorities started to search the area in high water vehicles and boats, but were unable to locate him. Deputies are still treating the situation as a missing persons investigation, but sadly their report says the man was “attacked and apparently killed.”
The office cautioned:
“Sheriff Randy Smith warns residents to be extra vigilant with walking in flooded areas as wildlife has been displaced as well during this storm and alligators and other animals may have moved closer into neighborhoods.”
Terrifying. Not only do locals have to deal with a loss of power and running water, they apparently have to worry about alligator attacks in their own backyards, too!
As you may know, Ida has ravaged the area, claiming the lives of at least five people and causing an estimated $80 billion worth of damage since Sunday. It is the second most intense hurricane to ever hit Louisiana, behind the historically devastating Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Even though the South is home to an estimated 5 million alligators, officials say attacks by the reptiles during or after hurricanes are rare — since gators typically hunker down in mud burrows if a storm is approaching. Clearly, there are exceptions, though.
Our hearts are with all the victims of Hurricane Ida at this devastating time.
[Image via NatGeo/WFAA]