After the state was ravaged by devastating floods, Kentucky clears the debris and evaluates the damage.


At Ogden Hollar in Hindman, Kentucky, on Saturday, volunteers from the nearby Mennonite community transport rubble from houses that have been flooded.

PRESTONBURG, Ky.: Timothy D. Easley/AP On Saturday, some Appalachian residents went back to their destroyed homes and communities to clear away debris and salvage what they could. Meanwhile, Kentucky’s governor reported that search and rescue efforts were still going on in the area that had been devastated by deadly flash flooding brought on by days of torrential rains.

Rescue teams were still fighting to enter hard-hit regions, some of which were among the poorest in America. Numerous deaths have already been reported, and more are anticipated.

Phillip Michael Caudill was working on Saturday in the little town of Wayland to clear away the wreckage and save what he could from the house he shares with his wife and three kids. The waves had subsided from the house, but they had left a mess and him and his family wondering what to do next.

Caudill, who is currently sleeping with his family at Jenny Wiley State Park in a free lodging, said, “We’re just hoping we can receive some help.”

Firefighter Caudill from the adjoining Garrett village had to get permission to depart at 3 a.m. on Thursday to make it home since the water was fast rising while he was out performing rescues.

That’s why it was so difficult for him, he claimed. “People are pleading for assistance as I sit here and watch my house sink under water. And I was helpless “given that he was taking care of his own family.

When he got home, the water was up to his knees, so he had to wade across the yard while carrying two of his kids to the car. They were leaving when he was just able to barely close the door of his SUV.

In eastern Kentucky, cleanup works are now in progress.

AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley On Saturday, locals in Garrett labored to clean trash and shovel mud from driveways and roads under the now-clear skies. Couches, tables, and pillows that had been wet by flooding were stacked in yards along the foothills of the mountainous region.

After floodwaters wrecked their home in Pine Top late on Wednesday night, Hubert Thomas, 60, and his nephew Harvey, 37, escaped to Jenny Wiley State Resort Park in Prestonburg. The two were successful in saving their dog CJ, but they believe that the house damage is irreparable. Former coal worker Hubert Thomas said that his house represented the entirety of his life savings.

I currently have nothing, he declared.

Harvey Thomas, an EMT, claimed that he fell asleep to the sound of light rain and was only briefly awakened by his uncle to inform him that water was approaching the house dangerously near.

He remarked that “it was coming inside and it just kept getting worse, like there was, at one point, we glanced at the front door and my and his automobiles was playing bumper cars, like bumper boats, in the center of our front yard.”

Harvey Thomas said he doesn’t know what’s coming up, but he’s grateful to be alive.

He declared, “Mountain people are tough.” “Like I said, it won’t happen tomorrow and probably not even next month, but I believe everything will work itself out. Just be prepared for a drawn-out procedure.”

The most recent state to experience severe flooding this summer is Kentucky. According to Kentucky’s governor, four children were among the at least 25 people who perished in the floodwaters.

Governor Andy Beshear said, “We continue to pray for the families who have experienced an incomprehensible tragedy. Some families have lost practically all of their members.

According to Beshear, the total number of victims of the record flash floods would probably increase dramatically, and it would take weeks to locate them all. The governor reported that more than 1,200 rescues were performed by crews using boats and helicopters.

Beshear expressed his concern during a midday briefing, saying, “I’m frightened that we’re going to be uncovering dead for weeks to come.”

After falling between 8 and 10 1/2 inches (20-27 cm) in certain areas of eastern Kentucky during the previous 48 hours, the rain stopped early on Friday. However, Saturday was predicted to be the crest for certain waterways. According to, some 18,000 utility customers in Kentucky were still without power on Saturday.

It’s the most recent in a series of disastrous downpours that have wreaked havoc on several regions of the United States this summer, including St. Louis earlier this week and once more on Friday. Climate change, say scientists, is increasing the frequency of weather disasters.

This week’s torrential downpours in Appalachia caused water to cascade down hillsides and into valleys and hollows, enlarging the rivers and streams that flowed into small villages. The torrent destroyed cars and inundated residences and businesses. Some people were trapped on steep slopes by mudslides.

To allocate aid funds to over a dozen Kentucky counties, President Joe Biden declared a federal disaster.


For six counties in West Virginia, where the floods caused trees to fall, power outages, and obstructed roadways, Governor Jim Justice issued an emergency declaration. Glenn Youngkin, the governor of Virginia, also declared an emergency, allowing authorities to mobilize personnel throughout the flooded southwest of the state.

The flood came two days after St. Louis saw record rainfall that dumped more than 12 inches (31 centimeters) of rain and resulted in at least two fatalities. Over 10,000 people had to be evacuated last month as a result of unprecedented floods brought on by torrential rain on snow-covered mountains in Yellowstone National Park. In all cases, the amount of rain and floods considerably outpaced forecasts.

According to scientists, as the earth becomes hotter and weather patterns change as a result of climate change, extreme rain events have increased in frequency. Because models used to predict storm impacts are in part based on past occurrences, they are unable to keep up with the increasingly destructive heat waves and flash floods like those that have recently struck the southern Plains and Pacific Northwest.

The United States is currently experiencing a battle of extremes, according to Jason Furtado, a meteorologist at the University of Oklahoma. “We anticipate these outcomes as a result of climate change. More water vapor is held in an atmosphere that is warmer, which makes it possible to produce more heavy rains.”