Saturday, September 24, 2005

SW La bears the worst of Hurricane Rita's lashing rain, winds

(LAKE CHARLES, La.) -- Emergency workers in southwest uisiana expect to find death and devastation when the storm's strongest horizontal rain and wind squalls pass.Rescuers plan to head to homes of people who didn't flee and called Nine-One-One seeking help as the storm pounded southern Louisiana and flooded coastal areas.

The hurricane's eye came ashore around 2:30 this morning along the Louisiana-Texas line near the largely-empty oil refining towns of Lake Charles and Texas' Beaumont and Port Arthur.

The storm brought with it a 20-foot storm surge. Up to 25 inches of rain is expected. The National Hurricane Center in Miami has no information about conditions in Lake Charles at landfall, because the area's sensors went down several hours earlier.

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