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New Orleans Braces as Storm Barry Nears

Rain and flooding could be the biggest threats
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 12, 2019 3:25 PM CDT
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Chef Frank Turner, left, and dishwasher Keith Brooks screw in storm protecters over the windows at Crescent City Steaks in New Orleans on Friday.   (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)
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(Newser) – Tropical Storm Barry is gaining strength as it crosses the Gulf of Mexico while residents, governments, and utilities prepare for its landing in Louisiana by Saturday morning. Whether it reaches hurricane strength or not, CNN reports, torrential rains are the real danger Barry is bringing. Forecasters predict at least 10-15 inches of rain, which could cause major flooding. A storm Wednesday already flooded parts of New Orleans. Barry's sustained winds Friday were 65 mph, per Accuweather; when its winds hold at 75 mph or more, the storm will be classified as a hurricane.

Evacuations have not been ordered in New Orleans. But the mayor has asked everyone in the city to be ready to shelter in place starting at 8pm Friday. Survivors of Hurricane Katrina, and the neighbors concerned about them, are especially worried. "Trauma stays in your body, and Katrina left a lot of trauma behind," one resident said. City officials said the storm will test levees protecting New Orleans, per CBS. President Trump already has issued a federal emergency declaration for Louisiana, and the governor said he's authorized the call-up of as many as 3,000 National Guard personnel. (Read more tropical storms stories.)

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