Fox News Weather Center

PHOTOS: Flooding shuts down major highways in Louisiana

Torrential rain triggered flooding across southern Louisiana over the weekend, submerging streets and closing major highways.

Portions of Interstate 49 were closed in both directions due to high water making it no longer safe to drive, according to the Louisiana Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. Several water rescues were performed on side roads as motorists became trapped in rising floodwaters.

Some of the worst flooding occurred along the Interstate-10 corridor from Lake Charles to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Rainfall amounts of over half a foot were reported in some locations.

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Several schools in Lafayette Parish reported closures on Monday due to the flooding.

The deluge of rain was caused by a slow-moving front that ran into abundant moisture from the Gulf of Mexico and ignited numerous thunderstorms, according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Rossio.

Floodwaters also engulfed eastern Texas, turning deadly, as rounds of damaging storms rolled through the region. According to the Associated Press, a creek overflowed its banks in an East Texas neighborhood, killing a woman and four grandchildren.

Drier weather will make a return to flooded areas along the western Gulf Coast by the middle of the week, Rossio said.

The drier conditions are expected to last into Mother's Day weekend, allowing floodwaters to gradually recede and the ground to begin to dry out.

Numerous cars were swamped by water as drivers attempted to maneuver through flooded roads.

Hail and damaging winds accompanied the flooding downpours in southern Louisiana.

In addition to causing travel disruptions, the heavy rain and storms suspended play at the PGA Zurich Classic in New Orleans on Sunday, forcing golfers to finish the tournament on Monday.