Downpour turns dangerous: Flooding collapses Warrenton road, sweeps away cars
Posted September 9, 2014
Warrenton, N.C. — Up to 9 inches of rain fell overnight in Warren County, flooding several roads and causing the side of Hester Road in Warrenton to collapse. But nothing compared to what happened on Airport Road.
The heavy downpour caused a 25-foot section of Airport Road to collapse, causing two cars and an underground pipe to be swept away by raging flood waters.
"We don't know if the car was driving and made (the road) collapse or if the road was already out when they came through," said Warren County Sheriff Johnny Williams.
A woman and her 12-year-old daughter were in one of the cars that was swept away around 5 a.m. The girl's family said she hung onto a tree until rescue crews arrived and pulled her and her mother to safety.
The mother will have to have surgery on her leg, but her family says she'll be fine. The 12-year old – although bumped, bruised and shaken up – is also doing well.
A man in another car was also swept away, but authorities said he was not injured.
The state Department of Transportation warned people to stay off Airport Road on Tuesday, but the massive washout was too much for some to resist. Many people came out to take pictures. The road will be closed for at least two weeks as repairs are made.
"This is a major repair simply because the entire road has been compromised," said DOT official Frank Carpenter.