Floodwaters rising on the outskirts of New Orleans

Officials brace for the worst, as high winds and heavy rain hit most of the area and prompt flood warnings
2:54 | 07/13/19

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Transcript for Floodwaters rising on the outskirts of New Orleans
And as we said, the torrential rain from Barry is just getting started. And we already are seeing its damaging effects. Flooding in Myrtle grove, Louisiana, cutting off highway 445. And this neighborhood in Livingston parish is already under water. ABC's senior meteorologist rob Marciano is in New Orleans tonight. Reporter: Tonight, floodwaters rising on the outskirts of New Orleans. Lakeshore drive inundated with storm surge. High winds and heavy rain have city officials bracing for the worst. The primary risk continues to remain heavy rains for the city of New Orleans. Reporter: This levee south of the city spilling over, one of several to breach, submerging vulnerable neighborhoods. We have our boats, generators, as well as our high water vehicles stationed across the city in preparation for any events that we may face within the next 24 to 36 hours. Reporter: Authorities are confident that the levees and these flood walls will not be overtopped. The question is, how much heavy rainfall falls into the city that sits below sea level, and can the massive pumps like this one keep pushing that water out? Earlier in the week, a much smaller storm dumping enough rain to overwhelm those pumps and flood downtown. New Orleans hoping they can keep up this time with a tropical storm. In nearby Baton Rouge, locals stacking sandbags, hopeful they can avoid a disaster. Alex Perez is there. The vicious wind creating some big problems. This massive tree came crashing down into the middle of the street end onto this power line and snapping this utility pole just like a twig. And the window of concern here, far from over. The rain and the wind will persist here in Baton Rouge through the night. Reporter: Flooding killed 13 here in 2016, a tragedy still fresh in people's memory. Not looking forward to it, but the main talk is just praying that it won't be as bad as they're forecasting, as far as the river flood stage. All right, and tonight rob Marciano right there in some of that flooding. He joins us live. Rob, where's the most danger heading into the night? Reporter: Well, I tell you what, Tom, the next two days are going to be worse than the last two days, and right here in Louisiana, really across the northern gulf coast is the worst. This storm surge. Look at this. We have businesses that are inundated. This is the lake. Look at the breakers. A five, six-foot storm surge. And with the south wind ongoing, this is not going anywhere. The center of the storm, 20 miles west of Lafayette, Louisiana. Look at all the heavy rain as far east as mobile. Flash flood warnings in effect there. This thing will drift to the north tonight, but the rain shield is not going to move all that much. So, we've got rainfall that could get all the way to paducah, Kentucky, that's where the flash flood watches extend, right on through Monday and Tuesday for 10 to 20 inches of additional rainfall right in the crux there. And again, once this south wind keeps going, this water with this storm surge is not going anywhere any time too soon. Dangerous hours ahead. Tom? Rob Marciano right there as the water levels are rising tonight. Rob, thank you.

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

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