New Orleans braces as Hurricane Barry hits land nearby

Monday, 15 Jul, 2019

While there were few indications yet of widespread flooding, Louisianans kept a wary eye on several rivers and canals being pushed to their limits by the torrential rainfall and by flooding upstream.

Forecast rainfall through Wednesday from National Weather Service. "A few tornadoes are possible through tonight across the southeast Louisiana, southern MS and southern Alabama", according to NOAA's forecast.

"This is just the beginning", said Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards.

The city's emergency preparedness campaign has urged residents to remain vigilant and stay patient. He welcomed the pre-storm respite from July's normal heat, but said he was mindful things could change: "I know we have to be on the alert". "I thanked President Trump for his support and for approving our request for assistance". "And water is going to be a big issue", National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham warned.

"Please be very careful!" he said on Twitter.

Almost 3,000 National Guards troops had been deployed throughout Louisiana for potential storm response, CNN reported.

After a flooding even, snakes may have been forced from their natural habitats and move into areas where they would not normally be seen or expected, according to the CDC.

The hurricane warning that had been in effect from Intracoastal City to Grand Isle has been downgraded to a tropical storm warning. But video showed water overtopping a levee in Plaquemines Parish south of New Orleans, where fingers of land extend deep into the Gulf of Mexico.

Some Plaquemines residents were battening down to ride out the storm, despite mandatory evacuation orders.

A spokesman for the Army Corps of Engineers doesn't believe levees will be topped by flood waters. Police have gone door-to-door asking residents to evacuate.

Tropical Storm Barry is working its way north across the Mississippi Valley, and though it's a weakening storm, it's still producing heavy rainfall and flash flooding. Martha Young, center, Patricia Plishka, left, and her husband Glen, right, battle the wind and rain from Hurricane Barry as it nears landfall Saturday, July 13, 2019, in New Orleans.

But it said "life-threatening storm surge inundation" continued as it moved inland. The facility was due to host a concert by the Rolling Stones on Sunday, but it was postponed by a day due to Barry.

Barry was officially upgraded to a Category 1 hurricane on Saturday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center. The risk of overtopping was minimal, the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness said.

None of the main levees on the Mississippi River failed or were breached, Edwards said. A 24-foot Coast Guard response boat also was launched from Morgan City to help with rescues.

The remnants from "Barry" will bring a chance for scattered showers and thunderstorms to central IN next Tuesday and Wednesday.

Almost 3,000 National Guards troops had been deployed throughout Louisiana for potential storm response, and the state's Emergency Operations Center remains fully active and staffed around the clock, according to Edwards' office.

Barry is expected to cross the coastline southwest of New Orleans on Saturday morning. Expect a 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms between 2 and 8 p.m.

Residents and business owners in New Orleans were laying down sandbags and boarding up windows while city officials set up shelters for residents.

With the 7am update Barry has strengthen slightly now up to 70 miles per hour, making it a strong tropical storm. Airlines began cancelling flights Friday.

This weekend's Rolling Stones concert has been delayed. After a turn toward the north on Sunday, Barry is on track to move on through northern Louisiana on Sunday, and over Arkansas Sunday night and Monday.