Three dead, thousands rescued in Louisiana flooding; more rain expected

BATON ROUGE, La., First responders worked through Saturday night rescuing hundreds trapped in deadly flooding as high waters continue to inundate southern Lousiana.

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Three are dead as a result of the floods, three days after water levels began to rise, the Miami Herald reported. All drowned, including a woman whose body was found Saturday. She had been riding in a truck.
Two nursing homes were being evacuated and there was a spike in overnight rescues, said Mike Steele, spokesman for the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. Police rescued dozens trapped in their vehicles along a long streetch of Interstate 12, which had to be closed between Baton Rouge and Tangipahoa Parish.

The National Guard used boats and helicopters to pull more than 1,000 people to safety as part of what the governor called “unprecedented, historic” flooding swamping the state, the Times Picayune reported.

Gov. John Bel Edwards warned that there is more to come from the slow-moving storm, expected to dump even more rain and cause more problems for Louisiana. Baton Rouge has gotten 10-26 inches of rain since Friday.

The Salvation Army, in the busiiness of helping those in need during times like this, is itself experiencing the wrath of heavy rains.
“This is an ongoing event. We’re still in response mode,” the governor said. He warned residents to heed evacuatiion notices and not to rely on what they have experienced in the past, since the state has never experienced flooding like this previously.

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood warning for southern Louisiana through Sunday. It said river flooding is likely to continue at least through mid-week. “Some rivers are experiencing major or record flooding,” it said in a hazardous weather brief.

“The Flash Flood Watch that was originally due to expire at 7 a.m. this morning has been extended and is now in effect until 4 pm across portions of southwest Miss. & east central/south central Louisiana,” the National Weather Service said in a statement.

“Radar indicates another round of rain and showers has spread into western portions of the area. At this time, the rivers that are experiencing major and record flooding have accounted for a forecast of additional rainfall in each specific stage forecast, however some adjustments could be made depending on how much additional rain falls.”

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