NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Tens of thousands of customers remained in the dark Monday in Louisiana and Mississippi, nearly a week after Isaac inundated the Gulf Coast with a deluge that still has some low-lying areas under water.
Most of those were in Louisiana, where utilities reported more than 100,000 people without power. Thousands also were without power in Mississippi and Arkansas.
President Barack Obama visited Monday, a day ahead of the Democratic National Convention, and walked around storm damage in St. John the Baptist Parish, where subdivisions were soaked in water from Isaac.
"I know it's a mess," Obama said as he approached a resident in the Ridgewood neighborhood. "But we're here to help."
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney visited the state Friday.
In St. John the Baptist Parish, residents spent Labor Day dragging waterlogged carpet and furniture to the curb and using bleach and water to clean hopefully to prevent mold.
LaPlace resident Barbara Melton swept mud and debris from her home, which was at one point under 2 feet of water. The garbage, debris and standing water — combined with heat reaching the 90s — created a terrible stench.
"It's hot, it stinks, but I'm trying to get all this mud and stuff out of my house," she said.
Melton was grateful for the president's visit.
"I think it's awesome to have a president that cares and wants to come out and see what he can do," Melton, 60, said.
A few houses away, Ed Powell said Isaac was enough to make him question whether to stay.
"I know Louisiana's a gambling state, but we don't want to gamble in this method because when you lose this way, you lose a lot."