(Washington) “Catastrophic” floods in Tennessee left at least 21 dead, authorities in that South American state reported on Sunday, and dozens of people were wanted, according to multiple local media outlets.
Posted on Aug 22, 2021 at 3:56 pm Updated at 10:26 pm
A previous report reported 16 deaths.
Tennessee was hit Saturday by rains dubbed “historic” by local weather services, resulting in fatal flooding.
20 people have died in the town of Waverly, County Humphreys, local police chief Grant Gillespie said at a news conference. A 21st person was found dead elsewhere in a rural area, said the same source, who said the death toll threatens to deteriorate further.
This county is about an hour and a half west of Nashville by car.
At first the police reported about forty missing persons, now we’re talking about twenty, including several children.
“Between eight and ten inches of rain fell over this area of central Tennessee over a six hour period on Saturday morning,” and the bad weather lasted into the night, the state emergency management agency added, calling the floods “catastrophic.” “. “.
Local officials from Waverly linked the weather to a hurricane or even a tornado and said the water had risen so fast that people didn’t have time to take cover.
Three other counties were also affected. Clean-up work is in progress and “many bridges and roads in the affected area remain closed,” the statement said.
The governor of Tennessee visited the site on Sunday afternoon, the agency said.
“It was almost as fast as a tornado. Someone called it a tidal wave, ”the mayor of Waverly told the local TV station WKRN.
Pictures showed overturned cars and muddy streets.
At a press conference on Sunday, US President Joe Biden expressed “deep condolences” and indicated that the government was “ready to offer assistance”.
“Our prayers are with all of the residents of Tennessee affected by yesterday’s historic floods,” tweeted Mark Green in the State House of Representatives on Sunday morning.