New Orleans Largely Spared Isaac's Wrath

But other parts of the Gulf Coast severely hit; 1M without power
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 30, 2012 7:46 AM CDT
New Orleans Largely Spared Isaac's Wrath
A pickup truck drives through standing water near Belle Chasse, La., in Plaquemines Parish, a rural area outside New Orleans that was flooded during Hurricane Isaac on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012.   (AP Photo/Erik Schelzig)

Tropical Storm Isaac continues to weaken, and should be a tropical depression by tonight, the Times-Picayune reports. But the trouble isn't over for Gulf Coast residents, with flooding still occurring and tornadoes possible. In the particularly hard-hit Plaquemines Parish near New Orleans, some residents are still stranded and rescue efforts are expected to be launched today, the paper adds. Isaac's storm surge overwhelmed the parish's Gulf-side levee, the New York Times reports. Many skeptical residents ignored the evacuation order, and were caught by surprise by the storm's ferocity and ended up stranded in attics or on roofs.

"We’ve never seen anything like this, not even Katrina," said the parish president. Isaac has already drenched the Gulf Coast with more than a foot of rain in some areas, and is expected to end up dropping as much as 25 inches. But New Orleans was largely spared, thanks to a nearly-finished $14.5 billion flood protection system, the Wall Street Journal reports. Even so, most of the city is without power and will be for a few days, and 19 inches of rain in some parts of the city did cause flooding. Nearly 1 million people in Arkansas, Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi are without power, CNN adds. (More Tropical Storm Isaac stories.)

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