Louisiana flooding is worst natural disaster since Hurricane Sandy, Red Cross says

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Red Cross: Louisiana flooding the worst disaster in US since Hurricane Sandy

The ongoing flooding in Louisiana is the worst natural disaster since Hurricane Sandy four years ago, the Red Cross says.

"Thousands of people in Louisiana have lost everything they own and need our help now," said Brad Kieserman, the organization's vice president of disaster services operations and logistics.

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"This disaster is the worst to hit the United States since Superstorm Sandy, and we anticipate it will cost at least $30 million – a number which may grow as we learn more about the scope and magnitude of the devastation," Kieserman said.

Despite the magnitude of the crisis, there is concern the situation is drawing little attention outside Louisiana.

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A truck takes a detour through a flooded street in Greenwell Springs, Louisiana, U.S., August 14, 2016. REUTERS/Jeffrey Dubinsky
A truck drives through a flooded street in Greenwell Springs, Louisiana, U.S., August 14, 2016. REUTERS/Jeffrey Dubinsky
An aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans rescues three people from a rooftop due to flooding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., in this still image from video taken on August 13, 2016. Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY
An aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans rescues three people from a rooftop due to flooding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., in this still image from video taken on August 13, 2016. Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY
An aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans rescues three people from a rooftop due to flooding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., A in this still image from video taken on August 13, 2016. Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY
An aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans rescues three people from a rooftop due to flooding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., in this still image from video taken on August 13, 2016. Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. EDITORIAL USE ONLY
The Acadian Thruway is covered in floodwaters in this handout picture from the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development taken in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. August 12, 2016. Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development/Handout via Reuters THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS
Verot School Rd is seen covered in floodwaters in this handout picture taken by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development in Lafayette Parish, Louisiana, U.S. August 12, 2016. Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development/Handout via Reuters THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS
Motorists on Highway 190 drive through deep water through Holden, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday that at least 7,000 people have been rescued so far. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Members of the Louisiana Army National Guard rescue people from rising floodwater near Walker, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Danielle Blount carries her 3-month-old baby Ember to a truck from the Louisiana Army National Guard as they evacuate the area near Walker, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Members of the Louisiana Army National Guard rescue people from rising floodwater near Walker, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Danielle Blount kisses her 3-month-old baby Ember as she feeds her while they wait to be evacuated by members of the Louisiana Army National Guard near Walker, La., after heavy rains inundating the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
People arrive an area, to be evacuated by members of the Louisiana Army National Guard near Walker, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Floodwaters reach the front steps of a home near Holden, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday that at least 7,000 people have been rescued so far. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
A sign tells motorists to slow down to avoid pushing water into homes near Holden, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday that at least 7,000 people have been rescued so far. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
An abandoned vehicle is surrounded by water on Highway 190 near Holden, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday that at least 7,000 people have been rescued so far. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Floodwaters reach the front steps of homes built on pillars near Holden, La., after heavy rains inundated the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said Sunday that at least 7,000 people have been rescued so far. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Army National Guard vehicles travel through floodwaters, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016, on LA-442, west of Tickfaw, La., as rescue operations continue after heavy rains inundated the region. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
In this aerial photo over Robert, La., Army National Guard, vehicles drive on flooded U.S. Route 190 after heavy rains inundated the region, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards says more than 1,000 people in south Louisiana have been rescued from homes, vehicles and even clinging to trees as a slow-moving storm hammers the state with flooding. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
In this aerial photo a boat motors between flooded homes after heavy rains inundating the region Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016, in Hammond, La. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards says more than 1,000 people in south Louisiana have been rescued from homes, vehicles and even clinging to trees as a slow-moving storm hammers the state with flooding. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
People arrive to be evacuated by members of the Louisiana Army National Guard near Walker, La., after heavy rains inundating the region, Sunday, Aug. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
In this aerial photo over Hammond, La., flooded businesses are seen from heavy rains inundating the region, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
In this aerial photo over Amite, La., flooded homes are seen from heavy rains inundating the region, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Jeff Robinson wades through flood waters near his home in Baptist, La., Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016, as he seeks a boat ride from state wildlife agents to pick up his wife and children. A slow-moving storm that has dumped almost a foot of rain in Louisiana parishes south and west and Mississippi counties north of the Mississippi-Louisiana state line, are in for more rain. National Guard soldiers and other officials in boats and helicopters plucked more than 1,000 people from their homes and cars as "unprecedented, historic" flooding swamped Louisiana, the governor said Saturday. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Jeff Robinson lowers a ladder from a Louisiana National Guard truck as his wife wades through flood waters from the Natalbany River near their home in Baptist, La., Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. Robinson was seeking a boat ride from state wildlife agents to pick up his wife and children when the National Guard truck arrived. A slow-moving storm that has dumped almost a foot of rain in Louisiana parishes south and west and Mississippi counties north of the Mississippi-Louisiana state line, are in for more rain. National Guard soldiers and other officials in boats and helicopters plucked more than 1,000 people from their homes and cars as "unprecedented, historic" flooding swamped Louisiana, the governor said Saturday. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
In this aerial photo over Hammond, La., cattle can bee seen huddled together in flood water after heavy rains inundated the region, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
In this aerial photo over Amite, La., flooded homes are seen from heavy rains inundating the region, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
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Red Cross spokesman Craig Cooper described the disaster as "epic," according to USA Today, but said it's lacking an appropriate share of the spotlight due to the Olympics, the 2016 election season and the raging California wildfires.

"This isn't making the front pages," Cooper said. "It's not making the landing page on websites. From the Red Cross' perspective, the Louisiana floods are page one."

Hurricane Sandy hit in October 2012, at the height of that year's presidential election pitting President Barack Obama against GOP candidate Mitt Romney.

Obama's handling of the disaster has been cited by some, including Romney, as benefiting him on his way to securing re-election. Obama visited Sandy-impacted New Jersey and was warmly received by GOP Gov. Chris Christie, which some Republicans criticized as aiding Obama.

Christie is now aiding Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who touched down in Baton Rouge for a visit on Friday. Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, on Wednesday tweeted a link where donors can give to the Red Cross and said she is "monitoring the flooding" closely.

Obama has been hit by some for not visiting Louisiana yet, instead staying on vacation in Martha's Vineyard.

However, Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, said he is OK with Obama's decision not to visit.

"I am not complaining about our federal partnership in any way" Edwards said Thursday, according to The Times-Picayune. "The president is welcome to visit whenever he wants to visit."

Edwards said a visit by the president could complicate flood recovery efforts. Obama's motorcade requires roadways to be shut down, for example, while plenty of roads in Louisiana are already closed.

Obama issued a disaster declaration for several Louisiana parishes on Monday, and Federal Emergency Management Agency head Craig Fugate decried the situation Tuesday.

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