September 9, 2010 in Nation/World

Texas deluged by Tropical Storm Hermine

Flood waters blamed in at least 2 deaths
Jeff Carlton Associated Press
 
Associated Press photo

Caretaker Frankie Donison, left, follows Florence Dobrey, in wheelchair, in Arlington, Texas, on Wednesday.
(Full-size photo)

ARLINGTON, Texas – The remnants of Tropical Storm Hermine swept northward through Texas and into Oklahoma on Wednesday, forcing more than 100 high-water rescues, swamping city neighborhoods, spawning tornadoes and killing at least two people.

Hermine packed a relatively light punch when it made landfall Monday night, and many residents said they felt unprepared for Wednesday’s sudden flooding.

In Arlington, a suburb 22 miles west of Dallas, 67-year-old retiree George Lowe said he and his wife, Laura, were surprised by how quickly and badly their neighborhood flooded. Water reached up to 5 feet high in some homes – many just a single story – laying waste to belongings.

“Did you ever see a refrigerator floating around your kitchen before?” Lowe asked.

Later in the day, a series of tornadoes touched down outside of downtown Dallas, damaging warehouses in an area near Dallas Love Field.

One twister slammed a tractor-trailer rig into a brick paint warehouse, causing the building to topple onto the cab and leaving the driver with minor injuries. Officials say at least four buildings in the area were damaged.

Near Alvarado, 20 miles south of Arlington, 15 rescuers tried to save a 49-year-old man who apparently drove his pickup truck into a low-water crossing. One rescuer got within 50 feet of the man but couldn’t proceed further because it was too dangerous. The man’s body was found hours later after the waters receded.

Another person in Texas died in a vehicle submerged by water from a swollen creek in Killeen, north of Austin, the National Weather Service said. Authorities in Austin suspended their search Wednesday for a woman whose black Lexus SUV was swept off the road by swollen Bull Creek, and planned to resume searching today.

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