Colorado Rainfall Threatens Flood Rescues
Posted on Sep 15, 2013
Severe rain is stymieing the efforts of rescuers to save people stranded by severe flooding between the Rocky Mountain foothills and the plains of northeastern Colorado.
More than 1,750 people and 300 pets have already been rescued from communities and homes swamped by overflowing rivers and streams swelled by heavy, unrelenting rains last week. Rescuers using military helicopters planned to expand to a broader area, but were losing time as dark clouds rolled in and meteorologists predicted up to 2 inches of additional rainfall.
“It will affect our air operations if it keeps raining,” Colorado National Guard Lt. James Goff said. “We’ll look at ground operations of any other courses of action.”
—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.
The additional rain falling on ground that has been saturated since Wednesday created the risk of more flash flooding and mud slides, according to the National Weather Service. An 80-year-old woman in Larimer County’s Cedar Cove was missing and presumed dead after her home was washed away by the flooding Big Thompson River, officials said on Sunday. The woman was injured and unable to leave her home on Friday night, said a sheriff’s spokesman, John Schulz.
“When local people came to help get her out of the home, it was gone,” he said.
The woman is missing in the same area where a 60-year-old woman is presumed dead after the river destroyed her home the same night.
The number of confirmed flood fatalities stood at four but was expected to rise. Hundreds of people remained unaccounted for though most are likely just stranded, officials said.
downclimb (CC BY-SA 2.0)
A view of the deluge in Boulder, Colo.