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Slow-Moving Hurricane Floods Louisiana Coast,...

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MOBILE, ALA. (AP) — A weak but watery Hurricane Danny drenchedthe Louisiana coast and crept toward Mississippi and Alabama onFriday, spoiling beachgoers' weekend vacation plans.

With winds just barely reaching 75 mph hurricane level, Dannymoved through the Gulf of Mexico and was expected to come ashorebetween Gulfport, Miss., and Mobile early Saturday, dumping 10 to20 inches of rain along the way.

There were no immediate reports of injuries from the storm, thesecond hurricane of the Atlantic season that began June 1.

The hurricane caused a 5-foot storm surge in Louisiana andsnapped utility poles, submerged cars and destroyed trailer homes.But it was not the kind of damage that alarms people who areaccustomed to seeing nature's fury.

The main threat in Alabama and Mississippi appeared to beflooding.

``We are staying,'' said Vicki Bruce of Lexington, Tenn., whowas vacationing with her family at Alabama's Orange Beach. ``Ithink there is more danger trying to get out with the traffic sobad. There is more danger getting hurt in a traffic accident thanin the storm.''

With the skies darkening, many businesses along Alabama's coastboarded up their windows. Cars streamed north through the rain asvacationers left motels and condos for home or drier ground.

People in low-lying areas, trailer homes and recreationalvehicles were advised to leave, but weren't ordered to go.

``We opened six shelters,'' said Mobile County EmergencyManagement Agency Director John Van Hook. ``There's hardly anyonein any of them.''

By afternoon, Danny was 65 miles south-southwest of Mobile,moving to the northeast at 6 mph.

Danny appeared to be on a path that would spare Mississippi'scasinos along the coast, angling more toward Alabama or the FloridaPanhandle.

``Looks like we lucked out on this one,'' said Wally Ramage, whooperates a shop offering fuel and bait in Gulfport, Miss. ``We'vehad heavy rains and 3-foot tides, but the sky is brightening.''

At Dauphin Island south of Mobile, Mike Flowers said he had noplans to leave his home and rated Danny a minor disturbance.

``I'm 73 years old,'' he said. ``I've been through all ofthese.''

Many thought that, too, in Louisiana, but suffered when Dannywas upgraded to hurricane rank early Friday and stormed through theswamps.

As Danny moved across Grand Isle, Louisiana's only inhabitedbarrier island, it piled water 5 feet deep, swamping cars andtrucks but sparing most houses, which are built on stilts. Theisland's 2,000 residents were ordered to evacuate, but only about800 did so, Grand Isle Alderman Robert Collins said.

``They didn't take it serious enough,'' he said.

``I ain't never seen water like this before. I was born andraised here,'' said Councilman David Camardelle.

The storm blew apart trailer homes in Venice, on the coast, andsnapped power poles in Plaquemines Parish below New Orleans, whichreceived only isolated squalls.

By JESSICA SAUNDERS,Associated Press WriterCopyright ©1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or distributed.

Copyright 2022 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.