A nigh-unprecedented weather event has descended upon the great state of Kentucky, and the images emanating forth from the Bluegrass State are simply heart-wrenching.
Intense rains and flooding have now caused more than a dozen deaths in Kentucky, with that number sure to rise in the coming days, as whole towns remain submerged by the dastardly storm.
For the second time in a week, portions of Kentucky were submerged after extreme rainfall that sparked deadly flash flooding. Several inches of rain in the eastern part of the state on Wednesday turned Appalachian towns into raging rivers that swept away homes and the people who lived in them.Advertisement - story continues below
At least eight people have been reported dead since the latest torrential rains began. In places like Perry County, as much as 14 inches of rain had been recorded over the previous 48 hours, and the rain was still falling on Thursday. Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said the death toll would probably rise into the double digits.
Simply and sadly put: The event was historic.
“In a word, this event is devastating, and I do believe it will end up being one of the most significant deadly floods that we have had in Kentucky in at least a very long time,” Beshear said at a Thursday news conference, adding, “This isn’t just a disaster, it’s an ongoing natural disaster. We are in the midst of it. and for some place it will continue through tonight.”
Kentucky is still working to repair the damage left behind in December of 2021, when a string of tornadoes leveled whole towns in the western portion of the state. The latest round of extreme weather, which scientists have linked to climate change, will present even more challenges in the coming months.Advertisement - story continues below
“We expect a loss of life. Hundreds will lose their homes,” Beshear said, adding that it is likely that many families will take not not just months but years to recover and rebuild.
Images of the destruction were being shared on social media.
This is Buckhorn School. I have spoken here before and they were some of the most kind people I have ever met. Absolutely heartbreaking. pic.twitter.com/pRuqRwWuZ9
— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) July 28, 2022
Hard to wrap your head around the record floods in Kentucky today. Climate collapse is here, now. In some places it means record heat and fires, in others its record rain and floods. For all of us it means increasing instability and devastation if we fail to act. https://t.co/1gP5J8DVQd
— Read Wobblies and Zapatistas (@JoshuaPotash) July 29, 2022
Hi everyone. My hometown of Whitesburg, Kentucky and the surrounding areas are currently undergoing their worst flood in history. Please, please donate if you can. This area is extremely impoverished and very unstable. My heart is breaking. pic.twitter.com/byJH4bh67d
— aj 🪴 CHECK PINNED 📌 (@soliloquirk) July 28, 2022
Houses under water, schools under water, folks stranded in their flooding homes, water rescues, reports of people swimming across flooded highways to reach higher ground. This continues to be a life threatening siutation for SEKY. This is heartbreaking. #kywx pic.twitter.com/MQgZntuWrn
— Chris Johnson FOX 56 Weather (@cjwxguy56) July 28, 2022
But, as with any American disaster, there were scores of people from hours away willing to come help.
Search and rescue efforts continue throughout Eastern Kentucky.
— Erin Wilson (@EWilTV) July 29, 2022
We can only hope and pray for the best as Kentucky continues to recover from this historic flooding.