State News

At least four deaths blamed on Hurricane Irene

Posted August 27, 2011
Updated August 28, 2011

— Hurricane Irene claimed at least four lives as it passed through North Carolina and into Virginia Saturday, and one man remained missing after he jumped or fell into the Cape Fear River in Castle Hayne as Hurricane Irene pushed ashore.

Sgt. J.J. Brewer, of the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office, said the man was one of three standing on the boat ramp when the storm's first effects were felt on Friday night. Rescuers planned to resume the search for the man Saturday night.

A man in Nash County was killed by a falling branch as he fed his animals near Red Road in Nashville, Sheriff Dick Jenkins said.

An 11-year-old boy died in Newport News, Va., when a tree fell into the apartment he shared with his mother. City spokesman Cleder Jones said the wind was gusting at up to 60 mph around noon when the tree crashed into the Brookridge Apartments. The boy's mother made it out without injury.

A 15-year-old girl was killed in a wreck at the intersection of Highway 581 and Interstate 795, where traffic lights were inoperable after the storm. Capt. Chad Calloway, of the Goldsboro Police Department, said the wreck likely would not have happened had the lights been working.

A woman died in a Duplin County crash when a tree fell on the car as she rode with her husband and child. 

A driver in Pitt County died Saturday morning when his car struck a tree on the side of a road, but authorities have not determined if weather caused the crash. 

Authorities have not released the names of the dead.

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