Rising water forces 300+ from Tangipahoa Parish homes

Rising water forces 300+ from Tangipahoa Parish homes
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB
Source: WAFB

HAMMOND, LA (WAFB) - The non-stop rain is causing problems all over our viewing area and first responders in Tangipahoa Parish have been rescuing people from their homes.

Parish President Robby Miller said at least 300 people had to be rescued by boat beginning around 3 a.m. Friday.

The focus now is on the rising Tangipahoa River. Around Noon it crossed over Hwy. 16 in Amite, and it also breached Hwy. 22 in Ponchatoula.

When some folks went to bed Thursday night, they had no idea their Friday morning would start in a boat.

"We woke up this morning and couldn't get out the house. It's almost five foot right here," one resident said.

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Rising water forces about 300 from their homes in Tangipahoa Parish

Between 12" and 14" of rain was reported overnight north of Hammond not far from I-55. Families inside one apartment complex scrambled to safety.

"It creeped back up on us. It wasn't on our floor at first, looked back downstairs and it was flooded about three feet," one man said.

The Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office rescued dozens of people from the area one boat load at a time, as others walked through knee-high water. A bus was eventually called in to take them all to higher ground.

"My kids had to be separated from me. They here now," one parent said.

They arrived at Natlabany Elementary any way they could. Corrections vans and parish work trucks helped with the evacuations that no one expected.

"We just got a house full of furniture and it's like gone. We know God is looking out for us, but still, we wasn't prepared for none of this," a resident explained.

The American Red Cross was able to house about 100 people at the shelter, as families filed in with whatever they could grab.

Were you able to save some of your stuff? 

"No. Just got some dry clothes and we got our lives, so thank God for that," one person said.

Stunned but safe. They're now wondering how much more rain will fall before they're able to get home.

Red Cross eventually consolidated their shelters to one location at Eagle Heights Church in Tickfaw.

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