Swollen waterways brought more flooding on Monday in Louisiana and Mississippi, where days of drenching rains have damaged thousands of homes and resulted in several thousand rescues of stranded residents.
Flood warnings were in effect as rivers, bayous and creeks remained elevated across the mid-South. The high waters were causing problems in already inundated areas as well as places not directly hit by the storms, emergency officials said.
“We still definitely have dangerous issues,” said Mike Steele, a spokesman for Louisiana’s emergency preparedness office. “There’s a lot of roadways that still have water over them.”
Authorities and meteorologists described the flooding as the worst seen in the region apart from that spawned by hurricanes. President Barack Obama declared flooding in Louisiana a major disaster on Sunday, activating federal aid for victims.
Flood waters across Louisiana were blamed for damaging at least 5,000 homes and resulting in four deaths, including a 78-year-old man who drowned in Saline Bayou near Clarence.
Harold Worsham was trying to remove items from a home amid rising waters on Saturday night when the aluminum boat he was in capsized, according to the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The Louisiana National Guard said it had rescued more than 3,000 people and 300 pets.
In Mississippi, emergency officials said no deaths had been reported but two fishermen were missing in Claiborne County. As of Sunday afternoon, 185 homes were destroyed or significantly damaged and about 650 homes sustained minor damage, according to the state.
(Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Dan Grebler)