The rush is on to prepare for Ida
BATON ROUGE - Hotels are booked solid in Baton Rouge ahead of Hurricane Ida, filling up in a matter of hours.
"In the last eight hours, we filled 2,000 guest rooms tonight on the books," said Downtown Hilton General Manager Tim Kuhlman said.
But the guests staying in the Capital City hotels are not hurricane evacuees.
"Most of what we have are first responders and the electric company, and those who are going to deal with the aftermath of what we are about to have," Kuhlman said.
Local supermarkets like Calandro's were also filled. Shoppers in long check-out lines stocking up in case they get trapped in by the storm.
"It started picking first thing in the morning about 8 a.m. It's been very busy ever since, crowd very packed, " Stocking Clerk John Davis said.
The store was almost out of bottled water, and all of the sliced bread was gone.
Costco's gas station backed up with drivers, who were making sure they have enough fuel to last them through the storm.
A similar situation for hardware stores in the area, like Goodwood Hardware and Outdoors.
"People are really taking this seriously," Shift Manager Anna Millet said.
Folks were loading up on essential items in case they lose power.
"We've been going through a lot of batteries, propane, lots of propane," Millet said.
The hardware store just filled its propane storage tank on Thursday, and it was just about empty before closing on Friday.
Many stores are planning on restocking shelves on Saturday morning, but they also expect the rush on essential items to continue during the weekend.