Texas flooding kills woman, 4 grandchildren

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(CNN) — A woman and her four grandchildren died after being swept away by floodwaters in eastern Texas on Saturday morning, police said.

The water swept them away in the city of Palestine as they exited a home where flood water had already risen to the roof, Palestine police Capt. James Muniz said.

“They lived on a cul-de-sac in a low-lying area. We had torrential rains that started after midnight and they have a creek slightly behind the house,” Muniz said.  “The water came up extremely quickly, the people tried to get out, but before they could get out, the water was already at the roof of the house.”

The oldest child was nine and the grandmother was 64, Muniz said. Their identities were not released.

“They did make it outside the residence and they were all swept away. It took two hours before the water came down and were able to recover all five victims,” he said.

Severe storms threaten the South

Slow-moving thunderstorms Saturday are expected to threaten parts of the South with flash-flooding, including most of Louisiana, western Mississippi, eastern Texas and the Houston area, which was hit with deadly flooding earlier this month.

The storm system could bring hazardous wind gusts and flooding, and isolated hail and tornadoes are also possible.

Two Boeing 737 planes were damaged by straight-line winds at their terminal gates at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, the National Weather Service said.

Sixty million people could feel the impact of the storm across the cities of Houston, Memphis, Nashville and St. Louis.

The heaviest rainfall is expected across southeastern Texas and southern Louisiana with possible widespread rain of 4 to 6 inches.

The Houston area has already seen its wettest April on record with almost 14 inches of rain so far. The previous record was almost 11 inches in April of 1976.

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