7 dead, 3 presumed dead, 82 unaccounted for in Colorado floods

Sept. 20, 2013 at 8:09 PM
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DENVER, Sept. 20 (UPI) -- The confirmed death toll is seven and the number of people unaccounted for after flash-flooding in Colorado was down to 82, authorities said Friday.

In a statement posted on the Colorado Office of Emergency Management website, the Larimer County Sheriff's Office said eight people were rescued Thursday and three people remained missing and presumed dead -- a 46-year-old Drake man, and a 60-year-old woman and an 80-year old woman, both from Cedar Cove. All three had been in homes that were reported washed away.

"The number of unaccounted people is now 82," the statement said. "This does not mean that they are missing, it just means that they have not been contacted yet."

An estimated 12,000 people in 17 counties were ordered to evacuate the flood zone at the peak of the flooding. Sunshine has returned but an area the size of Rhode Island was still underwater Friday, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The sheriff's department said four helicopters were flying rescue missions Friday, and search-and-rescue teams have searched about 90 percent of all structures in the flood area.

The U.S. Small Business Administration and the Colorado Small Business Development Center announced Friday that Business Recovery Centers in Estes Park, Greeley, Longmont and Loveland will offer financial and counseling services to business owners beginning Monday.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has signed an executive order bringing to $26 million the amount of aid available for flood-related relief.

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