Children disappeared after being swept away by floodwaters in Arizona

Elias Hubbard
December 3, 2019

Arizona officials confirmed a 5-year-old boy and 5-year-old girl were found dead after a military-style vehicle was swept away by flooding in the Tonto Basin area around 4 p.m. on Friday.

The children were passengers from a auto that was crossing Tonto Creek, near the New Mexico border, shortly after 4 pm.

Gila County Sheriff's Office said that the vehicle holding seven children and two adults was swept into a flooded creek close to the Tonto National Forest in Gila County on Friday. The children found dead were the son and niece of the adults.

Two adults and four children made it out fo the vehicle alive.

Crews are still searching for the third child, a 6-year-old girl.

Gila County Sheriff's Office said it received a report Friday afternoon of a recreational vehicle stuck in the creek near the Bar X crossing, which closed earlier that day due to flooding caused by a heavy winter storm.

The search for the missing girl was expected to resume at 7 a.m. Sunday along Tonto Creek after being halted Saturday evening, The Arizona Republic reported. Dodd added that they are hoping to find the last one and bring her to safety. "We have no information as to why they were trying to cross the creek", the spokesman said.

The Gila County Sheriff's office told KPHO a woman managed to reach the banks on the opposite side of the creek, where she was rescued. Dodd said that the group was believed to be out of town but no additional details have been known yet. They were eventually rescued and taken to shore with the assistance of a Maricopa County Sheriff's Office helicopter.

"Searchers found the truck about 1,000 yards downstream from the crossing Friday night", Dodd said.

Tonto Basin is about 52 miles (83 kilometers) northeast of Phoenix.

Arizona has been hit with powerful storms this weekend.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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