Hurricane Florence: Family Demands Answers After 2 Mental Health Patients Drowned

More miles of I-95 in SC closed due to flooding | The Herald Sun

The Horry County Sheriff's deputies reportedly tried to open the back door of the van to release the women, but were unable to because of the rising floodwater.

It happened in Horry County on Highway 917 Tuesday night as the van was in still water on Pee Dee Island Road near the bridge.

"Just like you, we have questions we want answered", Horry County Sheriff Phillip Thompson said.

Richardson says the patients' bodies were being recovered Wednesday morning. "It's come up two feet since just last night".

"At this time, the recovery effort is ongoing, and the transportation vehicle can not be removed due to rising waters and unsafe conditions", the sheriff's office said.

Gov. Roy Cooper told a news conference Tuesday is was hard for residents to leave home, and it's even harder for them to wait to go back.

US President Donald Trump helps with flood relief supplies in North Carolina.

Or northbound motorists from Georgia could get off I-95 and take either I-26 or I-20 to Columbia and then catch I-77 to Charlotte, the agency said. According to the report, the two deputies climbed to the top of the van and were rescued by a high water team.

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The patients were being taken from Loris Hospital and Waccamaw Mental Health Hospital to McLeod, according to WPDE. Holden wouldn't give further details on the victims' status, citing an ongoing state police investigation.

South Carolina's Department of Transportation (SCDOT) ordered Interstate 95 in Florence County closed at around 6:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday evening - hours after this news outlet sounded the alarm about rising flood waters spilling over the banks of the Great Pee Dee River. They trusted the hospitals and the Sheriff Deputies with their lives and that trust was abused.

State police spokesman Thom Berry told the AP on Wednesday that agents were on the scene aiding in the recovery effort. Thompsons said his office would cooperate with the probe. Thompson said neither deputy had committed any significant past driving infractions in connection with their duties.

Answering a question as to why the women were moved amid Hurricane Florence, Thompson said it was protocol.

State officials in North Carolina now say 3.4 million chickens and 5,500 hogs have been killed in flooding from Florence.

Boats are sunk and aground at Carolina Beach after the hurricane swept through.

After submerging North Carolina with almost one metre of rain, the storm dumped more than 16.5cm of rain in the Northeast, where it caused flash flooding.

"Major flooding is underway on several North and SC rivers, including the Cape Fear, Northeast Cape Fear, Lumber, Waccamaw, PeeDee and Little PeeDee", the USGS warned in a news release earlier this week.

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