Hurricane Isaac hits the gulf coast

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Hurricane Isaac, the slow-moving but powerful Category 1 hurricane, was felt along the Gulf Coast, threatening to flood towns in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana with storm surges of up to 12 feet and winds up to 80 miles per hour, according to reports by Reuters.

While not nearly as strong as Katrina – a Category 3 hurricane when it slammed into New Orleans on August 29, 2005 – Isaac was a threat that authorities said should not be underestimated.

Hurricane Isaac drenches U.S. Gulf coast, tests New Orleans
Scott Malone and Kathy Finn | Reuters
3:34 p.m. EDT, August 29, 2012

NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) – Floodwater from Hurricane Isaac jumped a levee on the outskirts of New Orleans on Wednesday, but the multibillion-dollar barriers built to protect the city itself after the 2005 Katrina disaster were not breached, officials said.

The lumbering Category 1 hurricane was lashing the Gulf Coast, threatening to flood towns in Mississippi and Louisiana with a deluge of rain, storm surges of up to 12 feet and top sustained winds up to 75 miles per hour (120 kilometers per hour).

With the storm nearly stalled, rainfall accumulations totaling as much as 20 inches in some areas were expected.

“The federal levee system … is fine,” New Orleans Mayor Mitchell Landrieu told local radio.

“There are no risks. It is holding exactly as we expected it to and is performing exactly as it should. There are no people on rooftops from flooding that even approximates what happened during Katrina,” Landrieu said.

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Google Crisis Map for Hurricane Isaac

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