Frightened motorists scrambled out of flooded vehicles as muddy floodwater surged through neighborhoods as a stalled weather front lashed Alabama for hours, submerging entire communities and killing at least four people on Thursday.
In Jefferson and Shelby counties, which include Birmingham and hard-hit Pelham, up to 13 inches of rain poured at rates of up to 5 inches per hour.
A four-year-old girl and an 18-year-old woman were among four people killed after flash flooding struck Alabama, submerging dozens of people in their automobiles. A couple was also discovered dead inside their car after it was washed away by strong currents in Hoover, near Birmingham.
The Bodies Have Not Been Identified
The girl, who has not been identified, died at Haynes Road and Hickory Hill Road in Arab, and her body was discovered about 11.50 p.m. on Wednesday night, according to a statement from the Marshall County Coroner. An 18-year-old woman was discovered dead on Friendship Road in the Union Grove area, near Arab, about 7 a.m. on Thursday. Meanwhile, two unidentified remains were discovered inside a vehicle near Hoover after it was carried away by floodwaters.
According to AL.com, the vehicle hit the flooded water near 1100 Riverchase Parkway West and was swept away before temporarily landing on a guardrail, trapping the man and woman inside. However, Hoover firemen were unable to approach the automobile because of the ‘tumultuous flood waters,’ and authorities said the rushing floods carried the vehicle over the railing and into the creek below within minutes.
The Hoover Police Department stated that additional personnel was dispatched to the area in search of the two, but they were unable to locate them. Officials told AL.com that the vehicle was discovered with two deceased people inside. The car was discovered 300 to 400 feet from where it was washed off the road, and it was submerged in up to ten feet of water.
Further Heavy Rain Was Reported
It comes after residents in Alabama were warned to stay at home on Wednesday due to heavy flooding. On Wednesday night, the National Weather Service (NWS) Birmingham tweeted further heavy rain is building & moving into areas already suffering from severe and life-threatening floods.
Scanner traffic indicates multiple water rescues from inundated automobiles, residences, and roadways.
The Birmingham metro area, which has a population of 1.1 million people, was the heart of the floods, with six inches of rain falling in only one day. Flooding was occurring even in locations that would not normally see high water levels, according to experts.