The United Houma Nation was on tornado watch through 4 p.m. on August 29 as Hurricane Isaac made landfall at around 6:45 a.m. Central Daylight Time, dumping at least 14 inches of rain on the tribe’s territory as it crawled along at six miles per hour.
Houma officials could not access the tribe’s website but kept members and the rest of the world abreast on Hurricane Isaac via its Facebook page. A site called Bridge the Gulf, which is collecting stories from Gulf coast residents on a number of issues, was posting updates and photos, many from Mississippi. USA Today reported that wind gusts were more than 80 mph and extending 60 miles from Isaac’s center and that 40-mph winds extended 185 miles out.
“JUST IN: Terrebonne Parish OEP is estimating 14.25 or more inches of rain in Terrebonne Parish over the next 3 days,” the tribe posted at about noon Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday. “With grounds already saturated from rainfall before Isaac, be aware that trees with shallow root systems are at greater risk of causing damage due to these high winds. Another great reason to stay put until wind conditions return to normal.”
At 1 p.m. the National Hurricane Center said Isaac was “soaking southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi with heavy rain” and that “dangerous coastal storm surge and inland flood threat expected through tonight.”
The storm was moving northwest and was expected to keep doing so at the same speed through Wednesday night, the hurricane center said, turning north-northwest on Thursday night or early Friday. “The center of Isaac will move farther inland over Louisiana today and tomorrow and move over southern Arkansas by early Friday,” the center said.
Principal Chief Thomas Dardar had expressed hope on Tuesday that the storm would not cause too much damage. He told ICTMN that at least 300 people of the 17,000 members had evacuated from close to the shore and said the storm would test flood-preparation measures put in place after Hurricane Katrina, which hit exactly seven years ago today.