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News / Nation & World

Rain, flash floods in Pittsburgh area spurs rescues, evacuations

By Associated Press
Published: April 12, 2024, 7:57pm
2 Photos
In this image provided by Pittsburgh Public Safety, Pittsburgh area water rescue team rescued a woman trapped in a car sinking in rising waters along a section of Route 51 east of the city Thursday night, April 11, 2024, in Pittsburg. Flash flooding caused by relentless heavy rains that soaked western Pennsylvania spurred numerous rescues and evacuations in the region, but no injuries were reported.
In this image provided by Pittsburgh Public Safety, Pittsburgh area water rescue team rescued a woman trapped in a car sinking in rising waters along a section of Route 51 east of the city Thursday night, April 11, 2024, in Pittsburg. Flash flooding caused by relentless heavy rains that soaked western Pennsylvania spurred numerous rescues and evacuations in the region, but no injuries were reported. (Pittsburgh Public Safety via AP) (mary ann thomas/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) Photo Gallery

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Flash flooding caused by relentless heavy rains that soaked western Pennsylvania spurred numerous rescues and evacuations in the region, but no injuries were reported.

The National Weather Service said nearly 3 inches of rain fell in a short time late Thursday afternoon and evening in parts of Allegheny County. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that some southern sections of the county got more than 4 inches as they got stuck under heavier bands within the storm system.

Rescue crews in the Pittsburgh suburb of Oakdale used watercraft to evacuate or rescue some residents, while officials in nearby Etna issued an emergency evacuation notice as Pine Creek breeched its banks at over 14 feet.

For the second time in a week, flood warnings were issued in West Virginia along the Ohio River, which was forecast to crest in the Pittsburgh area at above 25 feet late Friday into Saturday — well into flood stage. The river was at nearly 22 feet late Friday morning, a rapid rise from about 16.5 feet on Thursday morning, before the heavy rains moved into the region.

In Parkersburg, a portion of a loose barge struck a CSX railroad trestle spanning the swollen Little Kanawha River. Video from WTAP-TV showed the barge made contact with the trestle Friday morning as a train was moving across it before a towboat brought the barge until control. CSX was inspecting the trestle for structural damage. The Little Kanawha flows into the Ohio River.

Parts of New England were also dealing with flooding as more rain came early Friday. Strong winds were also possible throughout the region for most of the day.

Flood warnings were also in effect in several towns south of Hartford along the Connecticut River, which was expected to swell above 8 feet, a foot above flood stage. The weather service advised boaters to be prepared for a period of swift river flows.

In West Virginia, roads in at least 20 counties remained impassable Friday due to flooding.

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