1-Year-Old in Car Seat Swept Away from His Mother's Grasp in Hurricane Florence Floodwaters
The body of 1-year-old boy who was swept away in the floodwaters of Hurricane Florence was recovered Monday morning.
A spokesman for the Union County Sheriff's Office says the mother, Dazia Lee, of Charlotte, North Carolina, drove around a barricade that was blocking off a flooded road in the small town of Marshville (about an hour outside of Charlotte) on Sunday.
The spokesman says the waters pushed the car into a tree and Lee managed to free herself and her son, Kaiden Lee Welch, but lost her grip on his car seat.
The 1-year-old was swept away in the rushing waters of Richardson Creek. His mother was rescued and taken to the hospital.
Rescue teams spent several hours searching for the baby boy on Sunday night, and dive teams were sent out on Monday.
Paramedics on scene also had to be rescued when their ambulance got caught in the floodwaters.
Hurricane Florence dumped more than 10 inches of rain in some parts of the Charlotte region over the weekend. Although has been downgraded to a tropical storm, its death toll is still on the rise. Authorities are still concerned about flooding — and the long rebuilding process that will be necessary for some communities.
“The flood danger from this storm is more immediate today than when it made landfall just over 24 hours ago,” North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said on Saturday. “More people now face imminent threat than when the storm was offshore. I cannot overstate it: Flood waters are rising. If you aren't watching for them, you are risking your life.
The National Hurricane Center predicts that by the end of the storm, over 40 inches of rain will have fallen in parts of the Carolinas. The storm, which is currently moving at 8 mph, is expected to make a turn towards the Northeast.