FACT CHECK: Does This Image Show A Traffic Jam During Evacuations Before Hurricane Ida?

Trevor Schakohl | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook purportedly shows an Aug. 28 traffic jam on Interstate 10 in Louisiana amid evacuations due to Hurricane Ida.

Verdict: False

The photo actually shows part of Interstate 405 in California in November 2017.

Fact Check:

Hurricane Ida made landfall in Louisiana as a Category 4 storm on Sunday afternoon and has since downgraded to a tropical storm, CNN reported. New Orleans authorities ordered mandatory evacuations for areas outside the city’s levee system, while areas within the levee system were subject to voluntary evacuations, according to ABC News.

On Saturday, some Facebook users shared a picture of bumper-to-bumper traffic on a highway’s 12 lanes. “I-10 gridlock traffic- 4:37AM, 9 hrs ago,” one post claimed the image shows. “Evacuation for #HurricaneIda in full effect. New Orleans is expecting 10-12 ft of storm surge.”

Some people in Louisiana were in the process of evacuating on Aug. 28 due to Hurricane Ida, creating traffic on Interstate 10, Fox 8 reported. The photo in question, however, is not related to any storm evacuation and predates Hurricane Ida by several years. (RELATED: Did Mississippi, Alabama And Louisiana Revoke CNN’s Broadcasting License?)

It appears in a Los Angeles Times article, which attributed the picture to news station KTLA 5 and reported it shows Thanksgiving holiday congestion on Interstate 405 in California in 2017. The location captured in the image can be seen on Google Maps.

An Aug. 28 article published on NOLA.com features actual photos of cars on Interstate 10 in Louisiana during evacuations ahead of Ida. The hurricane has caused at least one confirmed death so far and knocked out power throughout New Orleans, the Associated Press reported.

Trevor Schakohl

Fact Check Reporter
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