A mother and her three children were among six people who drowned when two vehicles were swept off a bridge after torrential rainfall deluged Indiana, authorities said
The bodies of Felina Lewis, 35, of Laurel, Indiana, and her daughters, aged 7 and 4, were found in Sanes Creek on Friday.
The body of her 13-year-old son was found Saturday morning, said Franklin County Coroner Brian Baxter.
The children’s names were not expected to be released, he said.
The victims from the other vehicle were identified as Shawn Roberts, 47, and Burton Spurlock, 48. Both men were also Laurel residents.
Felina Lewis, 35 (pictured), and her three children were among the six people who died when their cars were swept off the road during the torrential rainfall
One of the two vehicles that was pulled from the floodwaters is seen above. Six people were killed in the flash flood, including a mother and her three children
Indiana Conservation Officer Josh Thomas said the creek, a tributary of the Whitewater River, quickly surged into a torrent in the region
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Baxter said autopsies were pending on all six victims, but they are presumed to have drowned.
A van and a pickup truck carrying the victims were swept off a roadway into Sanes Creek late Thursday or early Friday after a bridge over the creek was partially washed out by floodwaters when the area received 2-3 inches of rain, officials said.
Indiana Conservation Officer Josh Thomas said the creek, a tributary of the Whitewater River, quickly surged into a torrent in the region, which has many steep ridges and valleys that are prone to flooding during heavy rainfall.
It’s unclear whether the vehicles were washed into the creek at the same time or separately, he said.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources’ Law Enforcement Division shared this photo of a washed out bridge along Sanes Creek where the six died after being swept away
The huge section of bridge that collapsed while a van and pickup truck were crossing over it
Community members look on as rescue crews search for victims near Laurel, Indiana
Rescuers searched tirelessly until the final victim, a 13-year-old boy, was confirmed dead
‘It´s terrible. It’s hard to fathom,’ Thomas said. ‘Down here, with all these hills, things flood quickly. A lot of these creeks are very small, but all of a sudden they´re big with a lot of water and a lot of water moving really fast. They go down almost as quickly as they come up.’
He said all of the victims’ bodies were found along the creek and not in the vehicles.
Laurel is about 55 miles southeast of Indianapolis.