Storms dumped unexpected heavy rain on New Orleans Saturday, causing severe flooding in parts of the city.

City officials on Sunday warned that more heavy rain is expected over the next few days, which could pose the threat of more flooding, especially because the ground is already so saturated with water that it couldn’t absorb much more.

Despite doubts expressed by many residents, officials again insisted that the city’s drainage pumps worked as designed in the sudden floods.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu was not at the news conference on Sunday. He left town Friday for Aspen, Colorado, where he is attending a conference on public safety and security, Deputy Mayor Ryan Berni said. The mayor will be back in New Orleans on Monday morning, he said.


The flooding left many vehicles abandoned on streets throughout the city. On Sunday morning, city officials asked those with stranded vehicles to move them “immediately” or warned that they may be “courtesy towed.” Parking on neutral ground will be permitted until midnight Sunday in order to clear the roads.


Flooded vehicles will likely be one of the biggest pain points for New Orleans residents as they begin to clean up after the flooding. If you have a vehicle that took on water, here’s what you need to know.


The Satchmo Summerfest, which closed early on Saturday after heavy rainfall, reopened on Sunday. Organizers said they took “extra measures” to keep attendees comfortable on Sunday.


The heavy flooding, which caused an estimated 8-10 inches of rain over a three-hour period, left some wondering if the city’s pumps and rain drainage system was working properly.

New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board Executive Director Cedric Grant said the city's system was in working condition and working at full capacity, but that it was no match for the rain that poured over the area.


First responders stayed busy throughout the afternoon and evening. Police officers, firefighters and paramedics responded to a combined 200 calls for service related to the storm, according to EMS spokeswoman Liz Belcher. 


Professionals weren't the only people rescuing stranded residents, though. WWL-TV caught up with Danica Adams, who saved not one, but two people stranded and in need of medical attention while attempting to rescue her stranded boyfriend in Treme.

“…I’m really grateful I had a boat,” Adams told WWL. “The EMS was out here, fire, all the emergency vehicles were out here looking for people and doing their best, and I really am grateful that I was able to just get them to those emergency personnel faster.”


Heavy rain and flooding also hit Jefferson Parish on Saturday. Metairie, Old Jefferson, Elmwood, Harahan and River Ridge were among the worst-hit areas in the parish. Officials stressed that even though things may have looked bad on some flooded side streets, New Orleans had it far worse.


More coverage of New Orleans area flooding: