Hurricane Barry Gives New Orleans a Bastille Day Gift
By David E. Hubler
Contributor, EDM Digest
New Orleans’ French Quarter had plenty to cheer about Sunday, which was Bastille Day in the Francophile world. The much-feared Hurricane Barry came and went without causing serious damage or injuries on its northwest track across Louisiana. The storm was downgraded to a tropical depression Sunday afternoon.
Start an Emergency & Disaster Management degree at American Military University.
Barry produced only a “minor clean-up in New Orleans and most other areas,” the Times-Picayune reported. There were “some spots of flooding in coastal parishes, and lingering outages that saw more than 120,000 utility customers around the state without power through Sunday.”
Barry produced only “short and largely light bursts of rain in the metro area.” But communities along the rest of the Gulf Coast, both east and west of the Crescent City, were hammered harder.
Louisiana Governor: Barry’s Rains Could Have Been Much Worse
Governor John Bel Edwards said Barry’s rains “could have been much worse,” the Associated Press reported. More than 90 people were rescued from 11 parishes because of the storm, he noted. Edwards added he did not believe there were any weather-related fatalities.
The Times-Picayune explained that New Orleans was still recovering from a separate deluge last Wednesday “that was associated with the same system but not part of Barry.” That storm dumped between seven and 10 inches of rain in the city, “leading to flooding as deep and widespread as the 2017 summer storms that wracked the city.”
New Orleans is no stranger to violent storms and flooding. The first recorded hurricane occurred in 1722, just four years after the city was founded.
Flash Flooding Possible in Baton Rouge Area Today
Further north, the National Weather Service announced that a flash flood watch was in effect in Baton Rouge through Monday afternoon. “Tropical Depression Barry will produce periods of torrential rainfall in some areas that may result in flash flooding today. As the remnants of Barry move farther northward, the influence will diminish over the region tonight.”
Total additional rainfall accumulation of two to three inches with locally higher amounts are possible today,” the NWS said, adding that “rapid ponding of water” may overwhelm local drainage capacities. Flash flooding could affect areas that don’t normally experience such weather.