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White House approves Ky. disaster declaration

Randy Mancini 4 Jul 29
Members of the Winchester, Ky., Fire Department walk inflatable boats across flood waters over Ky. State Road 15 in Jackson, Ky., to pick up people stranded by the floodwaters Thursday, July 28, 2022. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

Members of the Winchester, Ky., Fire Department walk inflatable boats across flood waters over Ky. State Road 15 in Jackson, Ky., to pick up people stranded by the floodwaters Thursday, July 28, 2022. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

President Joe Biden declared a major disaster exists in Kentucky. The White House released a statement Friday, ordering federal aid to help with local recovery efforts in the areas affected by severe storms, flooding, landslides and mudslides.

At least 13 counties, so far, are listed for receiving the funds, but damage assessments are continuing. This means more could be added to the tally. At least 16 people have been killed as a result of the severe weather, a number Governor Andy Beshear (D) fears will double and could include children. The governor is expected to survey the damage of the flooding Friday and provide further updates as they come.

Heavy rains recently batter Eastern Kentucky, causing catastrophic flash flooding and mudslides. The mountainous region received several inches of rain over a 24-hour period, leaving streets flooded, homes and cars submerged in water, and thousands of people without power while others were stranded.

Governor Beshear described the emergency situation as the worst, most devastating flooding events in Kentucky’s history.

“We have activated our National Guard,” he stated. “In fact, I just signed a state of emergency that will unlock the resources needed and also tell the people of eastern Kentucky that we are going to be there for them.”

Rescues efforts are underway and authorities are delivering truckloads of water to affected regions, while also trying to restore power. The governor said its not going to take months, but years for families to rebuild and recover. However, he said help is on the way.

“We are going to do everything we can to help as many people as possible,” he stated. “This is what we do as Kentuckians. We help each other out.”

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