Flooding from Barry threatens 11 million people across the South

Author: CBS NEWS
Flooding continues in Louisiana. Photo via CBS News

Dangerous flooding from Tropical Depression Barry is threatening 11 million people along the Gulf Coast. Flood warnings are up across eight states with some areas potentially facing another 5 inches of rain. Barry made landfall as a category one hurricane in Louisiana on Saturday, but was quickly downgraded to a tropical storm.

More than 90 people were rescued in several communities over the weekend, reports CBS News’ Omar Villafranca. All eyes were on Louisiana as the state braced for Barry’s impact, but they were mostly spared as the slow-moving system lost its strength.

Heavy rains, tornadoes and winds up to 65 mph uprooted trees, damaged houses and flooded roads.  More than 90 people trapped in floodwaters had to be rescued but mostly there is relief. The hurricane-turned-tropical depression left many who feared the worst, unscathed.

Floodwaters forced Donz Bar in Mandeville to close. But when the waters receded, workers rushed to get the business back open — less than 24 hours after they had a foot of water inside the bar.

Levees that were overhauled after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 held up, but some back levees overtopped. As the rain continues to drench the region and the Mississippi River is at historic flood levels, officials are urging people to remain vigilant.

“We’re thankful that the worst case scenario did not happen, but we understand here in Louisiana if nowhere else that will not always be the case,” Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said.

Only about 300 people are using some of the 23 shelters open in Louisiana Monday morning. Another sure sign that things are getting back to normal? The bars on New Orleans’ Bourbon Street are back open.

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