Floodwaters from the Mississippi River are slowly falling, but for people from Tennessee to Louisiana, the misery it left behind is only beginning as they face gutting their ruined houses soaked in polluted water.
The bloated river has crested through the South and farmers with any hope of salvaging some of the growing season will have to scrub their fields of sandy sludge. And shipping is likely to be restricted for weeks because of pressure on levees, and a close watch will be kept well into the summer on strained levees, bridges and other structures.
Some of the worst flooding has been along tributaries, and not all of the smaller rivers in Louisiana have hit their peak.
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