Flash Flooding and Flight Cancellations Plague Northeast as Heavy Rains Continue

Heavy rains caused severe flooding and disruptions in the Northeastern United States for the second time in a week. The torrential downpour led to flash floods, flight cancellations, and power outages. In Bucks County’s Upper Makefield Township, Pennsylvania, heavy rains on Saturday evening resulted in the tragic loss of five lives. Several cars were swept away during the flood, and two children, aged 9 months and 2 years, are still missing.

Governor Phil Scott of Vermont issued flash flood warnings as the state dealt with heavy rain and the potential threat of landslides. Airports in the New York City area experienced hundreds of flight cancellations, with over 350 flights canceled at Newark Liberty International Airport and more than 280 flights canceled at Kennedy International Airport. The National Weather Service also issued flash flood warnings and tornado watches for parts of Connecticut, western Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire. Power outages were reported across the affected areas.

In response to the severe weather, New York Governor Kathy Hochul urged residents to stay home and avoid unnecessary travel. Suffolk County on Long Island saw 5 inches of rain within two hours, resulting in significant damage. The state anticipates at least $50 million in damages from the recent storms. Emergency operations centers were opened in Manchester, New Hampshire, and Tweed New Haven Airport in Connecticut closed due to flooding. Flash flooding also affected several cities in Connecticut, leaving roads impassable.

In New Jersey, heavy rain and flooding caused road closures and damage to infrastructure. Concrete stretches buckled due to the water, and a rockslide blocked Route 46. Pennsylvania experienced a sudden and torrential downpour in Upper Makefield Township, where the area received about 6 1/2 to 7 inches of rain in just 45 minutes. The rapid rise in water levels resulted in the flooding of roads and the washing away of several cars. Fortunately, eight people were rescued, but two children and their mother and grandmother were swept away by the floodwaters. Officials are still searching for the missing children.

In North Carolina, floodwaters claimed the life of a woman whose car was swept off a road. The extreme weather extended to Miami, where heavy rainfall affected an event featuring soccer star Lionel Messi. Meanwhile, Vermont is recovering from days of heavy precipitation, with damage to state roads and bridges, as well as disruptions to rail lines.

As the Northeast dealt with heavy rain, a scorching heatwave affected the Southwest, with around one-third of Americans under heat watches or warnings. Death Valley in central California and Las Vegas faced record-breaking temperatures. In addition to heavy precipitation, air quality alerts were issued for several states due to smoke from Canadian wildfires.

Throughout the severe weather events, emergency and transportation officials were actively involved in recovery efforts and providing aid to affected communities.