Louisiana residents pick up the pieces after the storm

David LaBlanc
David LaBlanc
Werlien Prosperie Jr.
Werlien Prosperie Jr.

By Kristen Dahlgren

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (KHNL) - Officials say the city appears to have dodged a bullet, from hurricane Gustav.

But the now, tropical depression is still threatening to flood parts of northern Louisiana.

In the city of New Orleans it is the calm after the storm.

"As far as looking around, there's not as much damage as I thought was going to happen," said New Orleans resident David LaBlanc.

A huge sigh of relief for those who feared the worst and are now finding a little clean up may be all they face.

But there are many others still waiting to exhale.

In Jefferson Parish, storm surge rushed back in to the town of Lafitte.

"The water is coming in pretty strong, so I don't know what's going to happen," said Lafitte mayor Tim Kerner

And officials are still making sure the system will hold.

In Houma, Louisiana, the brunt of the storm left behind damage that could mean months of rebuilding.

"We lost the roof to our city power plant, and the cooling tower roof blew off, said Houma resident Werlien Prosperie Jr.

Inspections are still underway, but so far it appears the refineries and off shore rigs escaped major damage, most should resume operations once power is restored.

Across the state power lines are still down.

But on this day of damage assessment,  local officials are feeling good about where they are now.

"It's a good test we passed," said New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin.  "Are we totally there yet, no. we need to get the protection up to a 100 year protection."

They also need to figure out how to get nearly two million people who evacuated back home. But for most there is just relief that they have homes to return to.