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Monday, August 8, 2011

Flash floods in North Carolina damage homes, leave two dead (Reuters)

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Reuters) – Flash floods in Charlotte, North Carolina, damaged nearly 100 homes and left two people dead in apparent drownings, officials said on Sunday.

The American Red Cross said volunteers staffed a shelter for two nights for residents forced from their homes by several hours of heavy rains and flash floods on Friday.

Relief officials, who determined that nearly 100 homes had been affected, also provided assistance for food, clothing and other emergency needs, according to a Red Cross statement.

Firefighters rescued dozens of people from flooded vehicles and homes and responded to more than 80 weather-related calls, Charlotte Fire Department Captain Rob Brisley said on Sunday.

Firefighters also recovered the bodies of a 43-year-old mother and her 16-year-old daughter, who appeared to have drowned in a swollen creek in east Charlotte.

According to police, the woman and teenager fled into the creek's swift-moving waters following a reported larceny at a Burlington Coat Factory.

A store employee who chased them managed to get out of the creek. Authorities found the mother's body on Friday and located the daughter's body on Saturday, police and fire officials said.

(Writing by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Jerry Norton)

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