The American Teleservices Association's 19th Annual Convention & Exhibition, set to begin yesterday at the New Orleans Marriott on Canal Street near the French Quarter, was expected to open without incident despite Hurricane Lili battering the Louisiana coast late last week.
Lili weakened to a Category 2 hurricane just as it came ashore in south-central Louisiana on Thursday morning, passing 130 miles west of New Orleans. According to the ATA, the New Orleans area was expected to enjoy sunny and warm weather Oct. 6-9, the days the show is to take place.
The sole convention victim was one ATA staffer who was sent ahead to New Orleans on Wednesday in anticipation of travel difficulties and wound up spending a long weekend in the city, an ATA spokesman said. Lili's effects on New Orleans appeared to be much less than Tropical Storm Isidore in late September, which filled streets in the city with water up to car windshields.