Homeowners sandbagged their doors and tourists trying to get out of town jammed the airport Friday as Tropical Storm Barry began rolling in, threatening an epic drenching that could test how well New Orleans has strengthened its flood protections in the 14 years since Hurricane Katrina.
"Look, there are three ways that Louisiana floods: storm surge, high rivers and rain".
"This is going to be a major weather event for a huge portion of the state of Louisiana", warned Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards.
Barry is expected to cross the coastline southwest of New Orleans on Saturday morning.
Forecasters say the first hurricane of the Atlantic season is expected to bring torrential rainfall and widespread flooding.
Barry is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 10 to 20 inches over southeast Louisiana and southwest MS, with isolated amounts of 25 inches. Also, the Mississippi River has been flooding.
Residents were ordered to evacuate some nearby areas, but New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell said no evacuations were ordered from the city.
"The water and everything, because the flash flood on Wednesday, was horrendous and did not allow traffic and cars to go by like they should have", said Cynthia L. Rivers, who flew back to Atlanta from New Orleans on Friday.
As of Friday morning, Barry was about 95 miles southwest of the mouth of the MS, with winds around 50 mph, well short of the 74 mph hurricane threshold.
Authorities took unprecedented precautions: The governor said it was the first time all floodgates were sealed in the New Orleans-area Hurricane Risk Reduction System.
A hurricane warning - meaning hurricane conditions are expected - has been declared for the area from Grand Isle (some 50 miles south of New Orleans) westward to Intracoastal City, which sits along the Vermilion River.
With the storm expected to blow ashore by early Saturday, National Guard troops and rescue crews were stationed around the state with boats and high-water vehicles, helicopters were on standby, drinking water and blankets were made ready for distribution, and utility crews with bucket trucks moved into the region.
Edwards warned of a unsafe combination with the already-high Mississippi River, which has been swelled by heavy rain and snowmelt upriver this spring. "We need individuals to not drive through standing water". "The only forecast for overtopping was down in lower Plaquemines Parish".
Many residents aren't eager to endure the expense and effort of leaving, compared with what could be a few uncomfortable hours or days without power.
"Just those impacted by the storm have gone through the necessary emergency procedures to evacuate personnel and prepare for the worst", Louisiana Oil & Gas Association President Gifford Briggs said exclusively on FOX Business' "The Claman Countdown" Friday.
The two sides are soon expected to hold their first working-level talks in five months, following up on U.S. President Donald Trump's historic June 30 meeting with Kim on the border between the two Koreas.
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A group of legal experts has been finalizing the wording of the deal to be signed by both sides in the coming days. Days later internet on fixed land connections was restored, but the mobile 3G and 4G services remained cut.
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The Kansas City Star
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