Flooding causes havoc in West Virginia

  • 25/06/2016

Flooding in the US state of West Virginia has killed at least 23 people, with heavy thunderstorms forcing rivers to burst their banks and triggering massive, fast-moving floods across the state.

Even fire was no match for the raging flood waters in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia on Thursday (local time). The remains of a washed-away home floated past, while freight trucks and cars were tossed around.

The storms knocked out power to tens of thousands, and more than 500 people statewide had to be rescued, including one man who shot a video while trapped on a rooftop.

Nicole Lewis was swept away by the surging Howard Creek, but somehow managed to cling to a tree for more than three hours.

"I have five kids, three who are mine and two steps, and I just thought about them the whole time, that I had to get back to them," Ms Lewis said.

At least 100 homes have been seriously damaged or destroyed statewide, and others are simply gone -- one disappearing along with the three people who were inside.

City police and medics have been going door to door checking for survivors.

Part of local Vicky Whitt's home was ripped away after the neighbour's house hit it, and she, her grandchildren and neighbours all had to be rescued from the second floor. The family dog was left behind, but they found him today.

"Thank God it's over," she said. "It's not over, but we got out -- so it's all that matters."

CBS News