Isaac steers clear of direct blow on New Orleans; Plaquemines Parish hit hard


NEW ORLEANS - Tropical Storm Isaac is still sitting over the Gulf Coast, dropping more rain on already drenched areas with no relief in sight.

Seven years to the day Katrina slammed ashore, some residents are now left with nothing after they were trapped by rising water again. The storm passed slightly to the west of New Orleans, where the city's fortified levee system easily handled the assault.

Channel 9's Berndt Petersen is in New Orleans as Isaac is moving through at only five mph.

At least one death has been blamed on the storm. Vermilon Parish Sheriff Mike Couvillon said a 36-year-old man had gone to help two friends move a vehicle from under a tree on Tuesday and fell to his death after climbing 18 feet up.

The accident happened shortly before Isaac made landfall to the east on the Louisiana coast.

Officials in some areas say they've never seen destruction like this before, not even from Katrina.

Plaquemines Parish in southeast Louisiana is the hardest-hit area, and officials will work to intentionally breach a levee there to relieve pressure from floodwaters.

As many as 700,000 people throughout Louisiana are without power. It could be days before it's back on because crews have to wait for the waters to recede. And more flooding is expected overnight.

Tonight, the Louisiana National Guard brought in more than a dozen high-water vehicles and 10 boats to help those who were stranded by the flooding.

More than 100 people had to be rescued as the rising water began to swallow their homes in Plaquemines Parish.

Forecasters are predicting Isaac could dump more than 20 inches of rain in parts of southeast Louisiana.

"Let me be clear. We're going to have a zero tolerance for lawlessness during this emergency, and to make sure this city is secure," said New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu.

Officials in New Orleans also imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew on Wednesday and will last until further notice.