'Historic' flood in Louisiana, Texas next?
THE historic flooding that swamped the southern part of Louisiana in south-eastern United States since Friday was expected to continue and might even spread to Texas before Monday, according to the American media on the disaster that had claimed at least three lives.
"An area of low pressure is meandering along the Gulf Coast and will continue to pull moisture straight out of the Gulf of Mexico this weekend," according to the commercial weather forecast agency AccuWeather.
Portions of the Amite and Comite rivers in Louisiana reached the highest levels ever recorded on Friday night.
On Saturday, Louisiana governor John Edwards called the widespread flooding a "truly historic event that won't be over any time soon", the Central News Network (CNN) reported.
More than 1,000 people had been rescued from cars, homes and elsewhere from swift-moving floodwaters, added the governor.
The body of a 30-year-old woman was recovered on Saturday in St Helena Parish, which is part of Baton Rouge, Louisiana's capital.
A 54-year-old man died when his vehicle was submerged on Friday, and earlier a 68-year-old drowned when he slipped and fell in flood water in Baton Rouge.
Power outages were reported and more than 100 roads were closed throughout the state.
A man told CNN that the flood seemed to come out of nowhere after about 53cm of rain fell over 24 hours.
"Our guard was down," he said. "And then it was a matter of just watching the water continually rise."
Mr Edwards has deployed the Louisiana National Guard, which said it has about 1,000 soldiers assisting in search and rescue.
The governor has declared a state of emergency which will remain in effect until Sept 10.