Death Toll Rises

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

Gov. Haley Barbour's office released a death count in Mississippi of 218 on Monday, up four from the weekend. Emergency workers said they did not expect a big spike in that number.

Louisiana health officials report the state's death toll has climbed to 423, as the grisly search for the dead continues more than two weeks after Hurricane Katrina hit. That's up from 279 Monday.

Recovery workers are now turning most of their attention to recovering and counting the dead.

One officer says his section of New Orleans has become easier to search as floodwaters have dropped to mere puddles. His unit of more than 600 can now reach homes and other areas on foot. As a result, he expects to complete the search in his area by week's end.

Overall, street-by-street sweeps of New Orleans are yielding far fewer bodies than had been feared. It remains unclear how high the toll might go.

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