Continued from page 2

PHILADELPHIA — The mayor and two of his bodyguards happened upon a house fire and ended up rescuing a cat, helping a victim and warning neighbors, officials and witnesses said.

Neighbor Dorothy Young said she saw the smoke Friday morning and went outside to find two children who lived in the house crying at the bottom of her steps.

Mayor John F. Street and two bodyguards, who had been walking to City Hall when they saw the burning home, rushed over to help, Miss Young said.

The bodyguards carried a boy who suffered minor burns into Miss Young’s home and went into the burning house to rescue a cat.

Mr. Street, clad in sneakers, sweats and a ball cap, began banging on doors and urging people to leave their homes, city Commerce Director Stephanie Naidoff said. He told her the story before leaving town for the weekend, she said.

Children playing with matches started the fire, and it was brought under control in a few minutes, Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers said.


Torrential rain ends after heavy flooding

SAN ANTONIO — The sun was finally shining over South and Central Texas yesterday after days of torrential rain that left an Amtrak train stranded, flooded roads and sent Boy Scouts on a camping trip fleeing for their lives.

As much as 17 inches of rain had fallen in some areas between 10 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday, said Pat McDonald, a National Weather Service forecaster. Dozens of people were rescued, some by helicopter, but no serious injuries were reported.

A Boy Scout troop from suburban Fort Worth camping on the Guadalupe River had to make a quick getaway early Saturday when the water rose rapidly. No one was injured.

An Amtrak train was halted Saturday morning in Knippa after water covered the tracks, stranding 176 passengers. Buses drove most passengers Saturday evening to El Paso, where they boarded another train and were under way by 10 p.m., Amtrak spokeswoman Vernae Graham said yesterday.

A woman who authorities say drove a minivan around road barricades south of Austin and became stuck in floodwaters with two children was charged with child endangerment. Laura Delarosa, 30, of Dripping Springs, was arrested Saturday after rescue workers got her and the children to safety.

From wire dispatches and staff reports