NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The holiday weekend nearly turned tragic for a group of about 35 people on Lake Pontchartrain. A houseboat anchored near the Causeway Bridge started taking on water after the weather became violent around 8 p.m.
At around 9:30 p.m., Coast Guardsmen rescued the group.
"We lost our generator. We lost all power on the boat. So we called the Coast Guard for a rescue. Our captain just said, 'Come get us. We have 30 people on board. Please come take these people off this boat,'" boat owner Nancy Cull said.
She brought a group of friends out to celebrate the end of summer, but the weather turned dangerous before they could get back to shore, she said.
"To be in the middle of Lake Pontchartrain where it might be 15 to 20 miles just to get to shore, you got to stay up on the weather. You can not take Mother Nature for granted," FOX 8 Chief Meteorologist Bob Breck said.
The free FOX 8 Weather App gives up-to-date radar and alerts users when lightning is in the area.
"Ninety percent of the storms and weather are surprises. They spring up out of nowhere and catch people off guard. That's what makes the current technology so much better for us," Breck said.