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Katrina anniversary: Seven years later, Hurricane Isaac impacts Mississippi

Katrina anniversary is marked by the arrival of Hurricane Isaac, seven years to the day after Hurricane Katrina struck the US Gulf coast.

By Holbrook Mohr and Jeff AmyAssociated Press / August 29, 2012

Boats are battered in the harbor as Hurricane Isaac passes through Pass Christian, Mississippi, August 29. The slow-moving but powerful Category 1 hurricane was felt along the Gulf Coast, threatening to flood towns in Mississippi and Louisiana with storm surges of up to 12 feet and top sustained winds up to 75 miles per hour.

Michael Spooneybarger/REUTERS

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Gulfport, Miss.

The sun rose over the Mississippi Gulf Coast on the seventh anniversary of Hurricane Katrina to flooded and deserted streets and sporadic power outages. Wind whipped coastal communities like Bay St. Louis and Waveland and dumped heavy rain on the already soggy ground.

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Thousands of residents in south Mississippi remained without power, officials said.

Power outage totals in Mississippi rose. Coast Electric Power Association said about 14,000 customers were without power early Wednesday. Singing River Electric Power Association also reported about 1,500 customers with the lights out, mostly in Pascagoula.

Mississippi Power Co. spokesman Jeff Shepard says about 3,600 customers were without power as of 5:30 a.m. CT. He said the majority of the outages were being reported in Biloxi.

He said Mississippi Power crews will begin assessing system damage at 6 a.m.

Entergy Mississippi officials said several hundred people were without power in scattered areas of south Mississippi.

Curfews were extended to noon in all three coastal counties — Hancock, Harrison and Jackson. Officials said road conditions were too bad for anyone to be out.

Hancock County Chief Deputy Don Bass said authorities rescued a Bay St. Louis resident from rising water early Wednesday.

Highway 603, the main route to Bay St. Louis and Waveland, was closed at Interstate 10.

"For the most part, we've been lucky, but we've got a long way to go," he said.

Darryl Antoine, a Waveland city worker, spent the night cutting trees off of roads, then checked the city's wells in the morning. He drove to his cousin's house early Wednesday to check on it.

Most of that street was flooded, but the house was rebuilt on stilts after Katrina and didn't appear to have wind damage. Antwoine said his own house was without power, but otherwise fine.

Jerry Beaugez, an assistant with the Bay St. Louis mayor's office has been working with the fire department, and said things have gone relatively well but it's too early to celebrate.

The water was still rising, a tin peeled off a business on Waveland and street signs fluttered in the wind. The storm could pound the area for hours and officials considered closing Highway 603, the main connector from Interstate 10 to Bay St. Louis and Waveland.

"There's not a lot we can do until everything subsides," he said. "As daylight comes, we'll get out and about and assess damages,"

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