Hurricane Delta Update: Louisiana Battered With More Than 17 Inches of Rain

Hurricane Delta, which struck southwestern Louisiana Friday night as a powerful Category 2 storm, brought with it 17 inches of rain in less than 12 hours.

By 9:30 p.m. Friday, Delta had already delivered more than 17 inches of rain to the town of Iowa and more than 16 inches to parts of Lake Charles, an area still reeling from the effects of August's Hurricane Laura, The New Orleans Advocate reported.

Delta made landfall near Creole, Louisiana, as a Category 2 storm, reporting maximum winds of 100 miles per hour. It marks the second hurricane to strike the area in six weeks, after Laura made landfall near Lake Charles as a Category 4 storm on August 27.

While all watches and warnings for Delta were discontinued in the National Hurricane Center's (NHC) 5 a.m. advisory this morning, the storm is expected to bring another 2 to 5 inches Saturday in parts of Louisiana, Arkansas and Mississippi, with up to 10 inches of rain possible in some areas.

"These rainfall amounts will lead to flash, urban, small stream, and minor river flooding," the NHC said early Saturday.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards warned residents Saturday morning that they needed to remain vigilant.

"Delta has left hazards like flooded roads, downed power lines and displaced wildlife in our communities that no one should take lightly," he said. "Everyone needs to remain vigilant, continue to listen to local officials and be safe."

Delcambre, a town east of Lake Charles, had already seen some of the flooding as of Saturday morning, journalist Krista Johnson tweeted.

Delta is the fourth named storm to hit Louisiana in 2020. Lake Charles minister Darren Worthington, whose church coordinates hurricane relief efforts, called the storm's effects "devastating," CBS News reported.

"The need is enormous. It is absolutely enormous. If you have driven around, and I know you have, you just see fences down, blue tarps on every roof," Worthington said.

"It's just been that kind of year."

As Hurricane Delta moved out of the Lake Charles area, the National Weather Service warned of heavy rain resulting in widespread flooding.

"This water will flow into surrounding basins and rivers, and unfortunately result in river flooding as well," according to a Saturday morning tweet from the service.

Hurricane Delta, Louisiana
A person observes rain and wind as Hurricane Delta makes landfall on October 9 in Lake Arthur, Louisiana. Go Nakamura/Getty

Chris Ivey, chief deputy with the Jefferson Davis Parish Sheriff's Office, told KPLC-TV that his department had units out on the streets Saturday morning, working with members of the National Guard to clear trees and debris that had blown onto the streets. There were poles down and power outages reported throughout the parish, he said.

Sheriff Tony Mancuso of Calcasieu Parish told KPLC-TV early Saturday that vehicles were overturned on Interstate-10, and that the situation remains "dangerous." Rising water is the biggest problem, and some areas have already been flooded, he said.

On Saturday morning 2,500 members of Louisiana's National Guard were deployed to help the hardest-hit areas, according to CBS News.

More than 780,000 people across Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas were reportedly left without power as the hurricane was downgraded to a tropical storm and moved further inland at 16 miles per hour.

Hurricane Delta is projected to move northeast through parts of Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky as the storm continues into Monday, according to the NHC. Other areas in the southeast are likely to experience rainfall as a result.

"As the remnants of Delta move further inland, 1 to 3 inches of rain, with locally higher amounts, are expected in the Tennessee Valley and Mid Atlantic through the weekend," according to an NHC advisory.

There is a potential for 3 to 6 inches of rain in the some areas, which could lead to flash flooding, the advisory read. A few tornadoes spun off from Delta are possible Saturday across eastern Mississippi, Alabama and the Florida panhandle, as well as parts of Georgia, according to the NHC.