Search for 2 Missing From Central Texas Floods to Continue

31 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

At least 2 dead after Texas pummeled again by heavy storms.

AUSTIN, Texas — At least two people were killed when a storm with high winds and heavy rains pelted central Texas on Friday, flooding highways, causing evacuations after rivers overflowed and spawning tornadoes that ripped through buildings outside San Antonio.BUDA, Texas — Punishing storms and suspected tornadoes Friday socked an already sodden swath of Texas that was still drying out from the remnants of Hurricane Patricia, forcing evacuations and shutting down a gridlocked 10-mile stretch of interstate. The body of one man swept away by raging waters when his vehicle was caught southeast of Austin has been recovered, a Travis County emergency official said, adding one elderly woman was still missing.

More than 16 inches of rain soaked one neighborhood, and Austin Bergstrom International Airport suspended all flights after a half-foot of water flooded the air traffic control tower. A lazy creek cutting through Texas wine country swelled into a rushing torrent, sending eight members of a vacationing church group scrambling to a second floor and awaiting rescue from the National Guard. Another body was found at Joint Base San Antonio Camp Bullis in Bexar County after a driver was swept away in flood waters on Camp Bullis Road at around 6:15 a.m., base spokesman Oscar Balladares said. Abandoned cars, many submerged in water, littered backroads that weary drivers risked after heavy downpours flooded Interstate 35 between San Antonio and Austin, closing one of the busiest stretch of roadways in the United States. The Austin Fire Department responded to about 500 calls for help while some residents in the nearby city of San Marcos were told to boil water for safety.

In the San Antonio area, four special needs students and two adults were rescued from a bus that became trapped in floodwaters just after 7 a.m., the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office said. Hays County issued evacuation orders and set up shelters for hundreds along the Blanco and San Marcos rivers, two waterways hard hit by the May floods. In Floresville, about 30 miles southeast of San Antonio, a high school wall was ripped apart by high winds that also tossed a recreational vehicle trailer onto the roof of a hotel, TV video from the area showed. The river later subsided. “We didn’t know where we were going, it was dark — the water was rising so fast,” Kathleen Haney, who was trapped at a bed and breakfast near Wimberley, said. A possible tornado was reported in Hays County on Friday afternoon, and authorities in other towns said they had spotted twisters and the damaging effects of high winds.

The Associated Press reported that emergency services rescued a church group from the second floor of a flooded Wimberley inn by stringing a rope between a staircase and higher ground and guiding the people across.

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