TAMPA, FL (WFLA) – What was once Hurricane Barry has weakened into nothing more than a remnant area of low pressure but remains a life-threatening situation for portions of the Mississippi Valley.
The center of Barry remains over Arkansas with heavy rain bands trailing through Louisiana and Mississippi.
Significant flash flooding and river flooding are ongoing in many spots where heavy rain has fallen. Preliminary numbers show rainfall totals between 10-15 inches in south-central Louisiana. Almost 10 inches have been recorded in Mississippi and Alabama, and more than six inches have fallen in Cookeville, TN. Water did breach at least one levee in Louisiana Saturday but it did not fail.
More than 90 people have been rescued as of Sunday evening according to the Governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards.
The Mississippi River in Baton Rouge, LA is at major flood stage and just 5 feet below the record. This is the second time this year the river has crested above 40 ft. The river is not expected to drop below major flood stage until Friday. Five river gauges are in moderate stage flooding and two are in minor flood stage along the Mississippi River.
Water levels are only slowly expected to recede through this week as rain continues to fall. The Weather Prediction Center is forecasting 4 to 8 more inches locally as a persistent heavy rain band sits over south-central Louisiana into west-central Mississippi. Life-threatening flash flooding remains likely through Tuesday.
Rain was not the only hazard with Barry. There was a peak wind gust of 72 mph on Pinto Island in Alabama. There were numerous wind gusts in the 60s. Strong wind gusts coupled with a saturated ground is the likely culprit for many of the downed tree reports.
Four reports of damage in Louisiana are due to a likely tornado according to the Storm Prediction Center’s storm report page.