via BBC News

Tropical Storm Lee has made landfall in Louisiana, hurling rain at a part of the US Gulf coast still haunted by the 2005 Hurricane Katrina flood disaster.

The storm came ashore 50 miles south-west of Lafayette, packing sustained winds of 45mph , the National Hurricane Center said.

The US Gulf Coast is braced for torrential rain and flash flooding.

Flood defences repaired after the 2005 disaster are expected to be put to the test in New Orleans.

A state of emergency has been declared in Louisiana and an emergency has also been declared in coastal parts of Mississippi.

The Miami-based National Hurricane Center said the centre of Lee is expected to move slowly over southern Louisiana for the rest of Sunday and into the evening.

“A slow northeastward motion is expected later today… followed by a turn to the east-northeast tonight,” said the centre.

Lee comes less than a week after Hurricane Irene killed more than 40 people from North Carolina to Maine and deprived millions of people of electricity.

It appears too soon to tell if another hurricane, Katia, which is out in the Atlantic, could threaten the US.

The Atlantic hurricane season usually brings about a dozen named storms, but Katia is already the 11th with half the season still ahead.

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