At least 8 dead in Arizona flash flooding


They have not been named by authorities.

Officials had previously said the last missing person was a 13-year-old boy, but have since realised that his body was recovered on Sunday.

"It was a big group of people out there enjoying swimming in the river and playing in the water", he said.

"I just kind of thought, I'm going to die before I'm going to turn 21", she added. Alexander exclaimed on the video. His wife was a short way away, also clinging to a tree. Had they been swept farther downstream, they would have been sent over a 20-foot waterfall, Alexander said.

Ms Alexander and others tried to reach them but could not.

Fortunately help was close by.

Brad Cole, of the Tonto Rim Search and Rescue, listens during a briefing at the Gila County Sheriff's Office command center during a search operation for victims of a flash flood along the banks of the East Verde River. Hornung characterised the river system as "fairly rugged" and said that it was "swim at your own risk". Then they get a call that a man was stuck on a rock due to the flooding.

Four were rescued but officials were still searching for a missing 27-year-old man Sunday night, according to the Gila County Sherrif's Department.

"He has to be found", said his sister Carla Garnica, 22.

The family, who was staying in the area, declined to be interviewed when approached by an Associated Press reporter.

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The National Weather Service estimated that up to 1.5 inches of rain fell over the area in an hour.

Flash flood warnings were posted in the area on Saturday, KNXV reported. "There is no cell phone service out here".

"Normally it's just a trickle of a creek, but during the monsoon season it can go from a foot deep to 10 feet deep in a matter of minutes", he said.

"They had no warning", Sattelmaier told the Associated Press. "We've just been lucky something like this hasn't been this tragic", Sattelmaier said.

ABC News Meteorologist Max Golembo said that what Arizona experiences during its monsoon season differs significantly from situations where heavy rainfall accumulates in other areas, like Florida, for example - in part because of the terrain.

A thunderstorm upstream rushed down from an area recently cleared by wildfires and in no time had flooded the area families were spending the afternoon, authorities said.

It isn't the first time people have been killed when flash floods swept through so-called slot canyons, which are formed by the wear of water in rock and are typically significantly deeper than they are wide.

A hundred people were taking refuge from summer heat in the swimming hole.

The area sustained heavy rain throughout the region causing flash flooding on Saturday.

Nine family members - six children and three adults - were killed when a storm unleashed a flash flood that turned an Arizona creek into a death trap.