Topline

At least 25 deaths have been confirmed in a historic flash flooding event in eastern Kentucky, Gov. Andy Beshear (D) said Saturday, as search and rescue crews continue to look for survivors.

Key Facts

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Beshear tweeted the updated death toll Saturday morning and warned the “number is likely to increase.”

Rain ended Friday morning after a storm system pummeled parts of eastern Kentucky with more than 10 inches of rain, inundating small towns in valleys across the state’s hilly Appalachia region, with some waterways still yet to crest.

The extent of the damage is not yet known but Beshear said earlier this week that at least “hundreds” of homes will be lost in eastern Kentucky, one of the most impoverished areas of the United States.

Numerous roads remain closed in the region, some due to bridges being washed out.

More than 18,000 are still without power in Kentucky, according to PowerOutage.US,

Key Background

Beshear activated the National Guard and President Joe Biden declared a "major disaster" in response to the flooding, which is just the latest catastrophic flooding event to impact the US this summer. Record-setting rainfall totals also caused deadly flash flooding in the St. Louis area earlier this week, while Yellowstone National Park is still recovering after rainfall last month caused a rise in the Yellowstone River that obliterated flood records that were more than a century old. Record-shattering heat waves have also been the norm across much of the country lately, as climate scientists warn extreme weather is becoming commonplace as global temperatures increase.

What To Watch For

More rain is expected in eastern Kentucky starting Sunday and continuing into early next week, but downpours that could worsen flood conditions are not expected.

Flash Floods Swamp St. Louis In Latest Bout Of Extreme US Weather (Forbes)

At Least 16 Killed By Kentucky Flooding—Toll Expected To Rise (Forbes)

Yes, Another Heat Wave: Almost 50 Million Under Heat Alerts Across US (Forbes)

Part Of Yellowstone May Stay Closed For 'Substantial Length Of Time' After Flooding (Forbes)