Flooding Prompts Hundreds of Rescues

Monster storm stalls over Louisiana and Mississippi, bringing massive flooding to the region.
3:00 | 08/30/12

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Transcript for Flooding Prompts Hundreds of Rescues
And much to the relief of everybody here, isaac is finally leaving tomorrwn. But not without leaving new orleans very wet, battered and dark. Hundreds of thousands of people will head into the holiday weekend without power. And here is the satellite map tonight, as isaac slowly churns north, after more than 24 hours of just driving rains. Still some powerful squalls on the tail end of this departure. And here's some fresh pictures from one of the most desperate places in isaac's wake. La plasse, louisiana, where hundreds of families had to be evacuated. This follows, also, a day of rooftop rescues in the southern reaches of this area. Much smaller than katrina, but still, an eerie example of history repeating itself. In this part of louisiana, a lot of folks keep axes in their attics. Exactly seven years after katrina, fred leslie is another reminder why. Fred didn't have an axe and had to be cut off, plucked off his roof in plaquemines parish today. A harrowing experience for the 71-year-old and his beloved dogs. It would have been a lot easier for fred to just leave when the evacuation order came down earlier in the week. But for storm hardened lifers down here and older folks fond of home, it's hard to get too motivated about a category 1 like isaac. Even when the president of the nation -- now is not the time to tempt fate. Reporter: And the parish is urging you to go. We need you to go quickly. Reporter: And there are 14 billion reasons to ride it out. That's how much tax money was spent shoring up the levees that so fay lousily failed, leaving the rooftop rescue a sad hallmark of this proud city. Here's a little example of what they got for $14 billion. Bran new mighty fortresses against the surging storm waters. And you can see, these federal levees are doing their jobs. But just down the mississippi, are earthen, levees, only eight feet high, which were no match. Sometime in the night, the surging water either topped or breeched the old levees. And the rural suburb of braithwaite woke up with the realization that their homes were drowning, and fast. They took us out of the attic, into the boat. It's very bad down there. Very bad. I live here for 53 years and this is my first time seeing something like this. This ain't never, ever happened to us. This is a shame. Reporter: Some wereless kuehled by game wardens. Others relying on the kindness of strangers, like jesse schafer, the third and the fourth. After watching 12 feet of water swol low their home in less than an hour, they jump into their fishing boat and went hunting for the helpless. Each says he saved around 60 people and dozens of pets. But is the ct is the cries of the children they'll remember the most. Three kids we saw screaming on top of that roof, screaming their lungs out. So we wouldn't mess them, you know? Reporter: When they came across ten people on one roof, the younger schafer gave up his seat on his own boat to make room for the old and sick. And had to wait to be rescued When I was sitting on the roof for an hour today to give someone my spot on the boat, i was like, I'll sit here in a hurricane, on a roof in hurricane winds, risking my life for someone else. We rescued a lot of people, saw a lot of things that you never thought you'd see. Reporter: And it will be awhile before plaquemines is dry again. The whole gulf coast, for that matter. Isaac may not have brought the block buster winds, but he brought way too much water to a region already saturated by a wet month. Look at this. Reporter: And extreme weather team member ginger zee is getting a first-happened glimpse across the border in mississippi. Reporter: The rain here is absolutely relentless. The mailbox almost covered already. This is still the beginning of the rain. This will go on for days. That's why up to 20 inches can be found across the gulf of mexico. Not sure we're going to be able to get through. Reporter: And abc's ryan ow owens didn't need to step on the gas to follow the soggy of eye isaac, through louisiana to america's heartland. The storm is moving so slow that just by driving at normal speeds, we've actually breached the eye wall. Now we're into more of the difficult weather. It is pouring outside. The car is blowing around a little bit, as we come closer to some of the hurricane-force winds. Reporter: Boy, some of thele toings in the brought-stricken midwest would give for this water. President obama did declare louisiana, mississippi, disaster areas tonight. That will open up se federal money down here. And 95% of the oil wells out in the gulf of mexico still shut down. Gas has gone up nine cents in the past week, so, isaac may find its way into your wallet eventually that way.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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