Sopping Northeast Grapples With Irene Devastation

Washouts, floods threaten lives across 13 states
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 30, 2011 7:02 AM CDT
Sopping Northeast Grapples With Irene Devastation
This Monday Aug. 29, 2011 aerial photo released by the Connecticut Governor's Office shows flood waters in Connecticut after Tropical Storm Irene passed over the state on Sunday.   (AP Photo/Connecticut National Guard, John Whitford)

With the remnants of Hurricane Irene leaving Canada, Vermont and much of the northeast is still reeling from the storm's devastation, reports the New York Times. Despite facing a much-weakened Irene, the region was hit hard by rains, closing 250 roads and several bridges in southern Vermont alone. “This is a really tough battle for us,” said Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin. “What you see is farms destroyed, crops destroyed, businesses underwater, houses eroded or swept away, and widespread devastation.”

Upstate New York and New Jersey also reported record flooding and many road closures, with an estimated 5 million people still without power around the region. “You have the wash-outs, you have houses coming off foundations because of flash flooding,” said one administrator from New York state. “People last night were saying it looks like a war zone.” Wet ground, already soaked from recent rains, was simply unable to absorb the torrents Irene lashed down. “It is a beautiful day today," said a Vermont retiree. "You wouldn’t think it was so cruel yesterday.” (Read more Hurricane Irene stories.)

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