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Before-and-After Images of Louisiana's Flooded Communities

These dismal scenes were recorded by a NOAA aircraft doing disaster surveys.

Louisiana is struggling to recover from an epic deluge that, though predicted well in advance, surprised many with its ferocity. Thirteen people are known to have died, thousands remain in shelters, power outages and highway closures persist, and the future looks grim with news that many of those affected don’t have flood insurance.

The scale of the so-called Great Flood of 2016 is grimly evident in fly-over surveys being conducted by NOAA’s National Geodetic Survey.

It’s thought about 40,000 homes have been damaged by flooding; here are some of them seen from a height of 2,000 to 3,000 feet. Before photos are from Mapbox, OpenStreetMap, and Digital Globe; after were recorded by remote-sensing camera aboard a NOAA aircraft. The city of Abbeville, before:

After:

Port Vincent, before:

After:

Denham Springs, before:

After:

About the Author

  • John Metcalfe
    John Metcalfe is CityLab’s Bay Area bureau chief, based in Oakland. His coverage focuses on climate change and the science of cities.