One Driver Killed As Heavy Rains Flood San Antonio Streets

by
Reuters
A woman died when her car was washed off a bridge in Texas on Saturday as drenching rains triggered flood waters so powerful they swept a San Antonio city bus off the street and prompted dozens of evacuations, officials said.

Flood water in some parts of San Antonio TX nearing 10 feet after record rain, flash flooding

A woman died when her car was washed off a bridge in Texas on Saturday as drenching rains triggered flood waters so powerful they swept a San Antonio city bus off the street and prompted dozens of evacuations, officials said.

The flooding, which followed torrential rains that brought flash-flood warnings across South Texas, inundated a number of major thoroughfares in the city and collapsed the roof of an apartment complex.

Several dozen people were evacuated after water rose rapidly through a neighborhood near the Mission Espada, one of the 18th Century Spanish colonial missions that dot the city's south side along the San Antonio River.

Priscilla Ingle, vice president of the city's Via Metro Transit, said rescue teams had to pull the driver of a city bus and three passengers to safety, and that bus service had been shut down until the water recedes to safer levels.

"The bus was driving down the street when water got under its tires," she said. "This forced the bus off the street as the water rose."

Separately, a 29-year-old woman was killed when her car was washed into a creek as she tried to drive across a bridge, police said. Local media said a male passenger survived. The victim was not immediately identified.

"We ask San Antonians to please stay off the roads and stay at home," Mayor Julian Castro said.

Flash flood warnings were in effect across south central Texas, including in San Antonio, through Sunday morning, with downpours of two to four inches expected on Saturday evening, according to the National Weather Service.

Fire Department spokesman Christian Bove said the roof of an apartment complex had collapsed from accumulated rainfall and that firefighters had been called to several fires believed to have been caused by lightning.

At one point in mid-morning, several dozen major thoroughfares in the city were closed by flood waters, although police said in a statement that many streets were starting to be reopened. Bove said his department was receiving around 30 calls an hour for motorists stranded in rapidly rising water.

Parts of San Antonio, home to the historic Alamo, received nine inches of rain in three to four hours, according to the National Weather Service.

The rain comes as central Texas is preparing to move into summer with lake and aquifer levels substantially below normal.

Elsewhere in the state, storms spawned a tornado roughly two hours away in Victoria County, the National Weather Service said. A sheriff's dispatcher said the twister touched down in a field and there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.