Eight people are dead and five more are missing after a strong flash flood at the Utah/Arizona border. The flash flood had the power to wash away vehicles and all the victims are mothers and small children. The youngest child was about 4 years old, said Assistant Fire Chief Kevin Barlow.
This strong flash flood ravaged an entire community. Most of the people who live there are members of the Warren Jeffs polygamist sect (recognized as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). Barlow said that the flash flood started on Monday evening with heavy rains in the canyons above Hildale. The rush of water was so extreme it washed two vehicles several hundred yards downstream.
Those two vehicles were carrying 16 people. Among them, 5 people remain missing, three were found alive and eight died.
“Most of the people were thrown from the vehicles”, said Barlow.
“It happened within like a half-hour, 45 minutes. Then it was just gone. And then the sun was shining again” Witness Chris Wyler.
By Monday night the water had mostly receded. People are trying to organize volunteers to help search for those missing.