US: Isaac floods homes in Louisiana



US: Isaac floods homes in Louisiana Washington: Though downgraded from a hurricane, a slow-moving tropical storm Isaac still packed a punch flooding homes and pushing water over the top of several levees in Louisiana and Mississippi, reports from these southern states said.

As they conducted search-and-rescue missions in the two states for stranded residents, officials warned of continued life-threatening hazards from storm surges and local flooding.

CNN citing s release from the office of Louisiana's Indian American Governor Bobby Jindal said 1,500 people had been evacuated with 1,500 more needing rescue. The state sent 89 buses to take evacuees to shelters.

The situation also was particularly dire in Plaquemines Parish, southeast of New Orleans, where 3,000 people remained in one area close to an 8-foot tall levee that waters are threatening, Jindal's office said.

Earlier, Jindal said a first estimate from local officials in the parish showed as many as 800 homes may have received significant water damage. The US Army Corps of Engineers reported significant storm surge in the parish, scene of many rescues.

Hurricane Isaac has cost state and local government more than USD 24 million so far, The Times-Picayune reported citing Jindal.

The state is spending about USD 14.7 million for expenses incurred by the hurricane and local government is has shelled out about USD 9.5 million so far, he said.

However, to the relief of officials, the New Orleans levee system and pump stations were working furiously to deal with the deluge.

The system was rebuilt and reinforced at a cost of USD 14 billion after it failed when Katrina struck in 2005. Nearly 1,800 people died as a result of that storm, the majority when levees and flood walls failed and flooded.

IANS