Louisiana: 13 Dead 40,000 Homes Damaged
Days of heavy rain have caused historic flooding in the US state of Louisiana, bringing as much as 31in (79cm) across a third of the state.
The downpour continued for more than 72 hours, leading to widespread and dramatic flooding in the affected area and downstream along the Amite river.
Louisiana has seen four times the average amount of rainfall for August.
“What made this so disastrous is the large area,” says Ken Graham, meteorologist-in-charge at the National Weather Service’s New Orleans/Baton Rouge office.
Graham says much of the eastern portion of the state, from the northern Mississippi border all the way to the Gulf of Mexico saw rainfall of at least 15 inches over 48 hours. That’s about 11,000 sq miles, about twice the size of Connecticut.
“Normally you would see some small pockets with these kinds of rainfall totals, but this is the largest area of this kind of rainfall I’ve seen in my career.”
The result has been devastating.
At least 13 people have died and more than 40,000 homes have been damaged.
Towns along the Amite river have experienced some of the worst flooding.
In Denham Springs, the river topped 46.2ft, four feet higher than its previous record in 1983.
In one parish east of Baton Rouge, officials believe 75% of the homes had been damaged, according to the Los Angeles Times.