Heavy rains have hit several states across the middle of the country with more in the forecast -- and in Colorado, the flash flooding was deadly. NBC's Leanne Gregg reports.
One person was dead, three were injured, and two more were missing after powerful floodwaters swept through Manitou Springs, Colo., officials said Saturday.
The torrential rains slammed mountainsides on Friday that had already been stripped of vegetation by a wildfire, authorities said.
The victim who died was identified Saturday afternoon as John Collins, 53, of Teller County. Collins was found buried beneath debris off of Colorado’s Highway 24, which was closed Friday evening due to the flood warning.
Collins' vehicle was found further west on Highway 24, the El Paso County Sheriff's Office said in a statement. It was unclear whether Collins got out of his vehicle by himself or was swept from it by the water, according to the statement.
Lt. Jeff Kramer with the El Paso County Sheriff's Office said three people were hurt when the heavy rains led to flash flooding around 5:45 p.m. local time on Friday.
Two people were still listed as missing, including a woman who was last seen clinging to a tree, the Denver Post reported.
Over the course of about two hours, 1.3 inches of rain fell in the area that was burned in 2012 by the Waldo Canyon wildfire, according to the National Weather Service.
Manitou Spring Police Chief Joe Ribeiro said at a news conference on Saturday that three people were unaccounted for: one woman and two men.
The deluge caused "significant" structural damage to local businesses and homes, according to David Hunting with the Manitou Police Department.
"It's just absolute chaos," Elissa Hokenstad told the Colorado Springs Gazette.
A flash flood watch is in effect for the area through Saturday evening. Rain is expected locally through Wednesday.
The rush of water in Manitou Springs is one in a series of floods that have swept through the central United States, particularly the Tennessee Valley, in August. Regions in southern Missouri have been among the hardest hit, receiving 12 to 18 inches of rainfall since Aug. 1.
Though forecasts predict that the weekend will likely bring relief from rain in Colorado, storms are expected to continue in the
Tennessee Valley for the next 48 hours, forecasters said.
Manitou Springs is a suburb of Colorado Springs, located about 75 miles south of Denver.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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This story was originally published on Sat Aug 10, 2013 10:59 AM EDT