Conditions deteriorating quickly as storm bears down on Gulf

New Orleans floodgates were closed for the first time in history, as residents were being urged to shelter in place.
3:24 | 07/12/19

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Transcript for Conditions deteriorating quickly as storm bears down on Gulf
on a very busy Friday night. We begin with a life threatening storm about to hit the gulf in hours. The outer bands already hitting. The roads covered in water. Driving conditions worsening. Look at the flooding already. This could make landfall in Louisiana as a hurricane. The levees will be tested. And officials are warning not just about the storm itself. This is the highest the Mississippi river has ever been with a storm this size about to hit. President trump declaing a state of emergency. Rob Marciano is there and he leads us off. Reporter: Tonight, Barry churning its way onto the gulf coast. The slow-moving storm already pushing water inland. Thousands scrambling to pack up and get out. This station running out of fuel. As you can see, there's gas already running out of these pumps. Several of these pumps no longer have gas. In fact, only two are up and running right now. Reporter: Store shelves emptying, too. Officials warning this a life threatening storm and the clock is ticking. Time is short. If you have preparations that you need to complete, now is the time. Reporter: Tonight, grand isle, Louisiana, is already under water before this storm even hits. Residents here ordered to evacuate, but not everyone getting out. We have a neighbor down the road from us. She is hospital bound, in a hospital bed. They're not leaving either. Reporter: To the west, our Alex Perez is directly in the storm's path. Here near Morgan city, you can see residents are taking no chans already filling up sandbags. We're here near the central coast of Louisiana. This could be right in Barry's bull's-eye. Reporter: And tonight, conditions deteriorating by the hour. In New Orleans, residents are being urged to shelter in place. Tourists are pulling out of town. Ever been through a hurricane? Yes, Hugo. I'm from Charleston. Reporter: So you don't want to stick around for this one. Oh, no. They tell you to evacuate, you get out. Reporter: Store fronts in the French quarter, boarded up. For the first time in history, all the city's floodgates are closed. I've never seen them close off the river. Reporter: The governor is confident the levees will hold back the Mississippi river, at least in New Orleans. Our state is better prepared, but that comes with a caveat. You never know what mother nature is going to serve until she has served it. That's for sure. Rob has the new timing and track of the storm, set to make landfall overnight? Reporter: That's right. We've been hit with heavy rain falls all day. The center of the storm, 50 miles off the coastline. Here it is on the satellite picture. And the heaviest weather to the south. And landfall expected in the next 12 hours, likely as a the storm surge will be about six feet. The worst of which will be on the east side, as will the heaviest rainfall. Baton Rouge could see over two feet of rain. It's a slow mover, a weekend-long event across the southeast. Rob, keep the crew safe. In the meantime, we'll be watching your forecasts this weekend.

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

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