Jeanne rips mid-Atlantic

Jeanne's remnants ripped the mid-Atlantic Tuesday night with floods and tornadoes.

BY HEATHER MOYER | BALTIMORE | September 29, 2004


Hurricane Jeanne's remnants ripped the mid-Atlantic Tuesday night with floods and tornadoes that killed two people and damaged homes.

Virginia saw one flood-related death after heavy rains forced streams and rivers from theirs banks. Areas of the state received 5-11 inches of rain. Gov. Mark Warner declared a state of emergency Tuesday.

Hundreds of roads were closed throughout Virginia as floodwaters stranded drivers and prompted numerous emergency water rescues. In Roanoke County, the city of Salem appears to be hardest hit, according to a county emergency management spokesperson. Damage assessments were continuing throughout the county Wednesday. Victory Stadium in the city of Roanoke is covered with mud and debris after floodwaters raged through the area Tuesday afternoon.

Farther north in Augusta County, emergency officials say the southeast portion of the county suffered the most damages. Other counties reporting significant flooding include Pittsylvania, Patrick, Frederick, Montgomery and Alleghany. The Virginia Division of Emergency Management (VDEM) reported that 130 people stayed in eight shelters across flooded areas Tuesday night.

Eastern Pennsylvania saw significant flooding in Philadelphia and across Bucks and Montgomery counties. One woman died in Philadelphia when floodwaters swept her off a corner and underneath a car. High water also closed the Schuylkill Expressway for hours during Tuesday evening's rush hour.

In Bucks County, emergency officials issued the second disaster declaration in two weeks. Hurricane Ivan's remains drenched the region two weekends ago. The Neshaminy Creek crested Wednesday morning at over six feet above flood stage. The neighborhoods along the creek flood frequently, according to a release from the county's emergency operation center, so authorities reached out to over 700 homes to warn them of the rising water. County workers are assessing damages at this time.

Damage assessments are continuing in Montgomery County Wednesday as well, but officials are saying the damage is severe. "We've dispatched hundreds of pumps to help residents so far, so we expect a significant amount of residential damage," said Tom Sullivan, assistant director of public safety for the county. "We're still doing assessments, but it's pretty bad."

Sullivan said during the heavy rains, the county's 911 center fielded over 1,500 calls for help and emergency officials dealt with hundreds of water rescues. Three shelters are set up in the county.

Representatives from the Penn. Emergency Management Agency are touring Montgomery County Wednesday, while the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be in the area Thursday to survey damages.

Jeanne's swirling winds spawned two tornadoes Tuesday afternoon. One hit the New Castle County Airport in Delaware, tipping several C-130 cargo planes, damaging several buildings, and pushing cars off State Route 141. Several minor injuries were reported.

In New Jersey, National Weather Service officials confirmed that an F0 twister touched down in the Cherry Hill area, damaging 11 businesses, along with numerous cars in one shopping center parking lot. No injuries were reported.

A possible tornado touched down in Maryland's Calvert County, damaging a barn and another business. Areas of Maryland received over five inches of rain Tuesday.

A Maryland Emergency Management Agency spokesperson said the agency had received reports of minor localized flooding in some areas, with western Maryland's Frederick County seeing the most. For the most part, though, weather officials are saying Jeanne just caused a terrible evening rush hour for the Baltimore-Washington region.


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