"New Data Reveal Where Flood Damage Is An Existential Threat"

"Pastor Aaron Trigg was at home when the water arrived in Rainelle. It had been raining hard all day, filling the creeks and rivers that run through southern West Virginia. In the past, such intense downpours would last only a few hours, but this storm brought wave after wave of torrential rain.

'You could hear the water up in the mountains just crashing trees,' Trigg remembers.

Rainelle is a small town in a steep valley. When the creek near downtown jumped its banks on the evening of June 23, 2016, the water immediately flooded into every home on Trigg's block.

Trigg's house was one-story tall, so there was nowhere to escape. He took shelter on the second floor of his neighbor's house and waited as the water kept rising. As it got dark, he could hear people screaming for help. He wondered if he would survive the night. 'I did a lot of praying that night,' he says. 'Not so much for myself, but for the people I could hear.'"

Rebecca Hersher, Huo Jingnan, and Sophia Schmidt report for NPR February 22, 2021.


"Climate Threats Could Mean Big Jumps in Insurance Costs This Year" (New York Times)

Source: NPR, 02/23/2021