Crew members trained regularly in calm waters to handle the lifeboats would instead likely have struggled against buffeting by huge 50-foot waves, a vessel taking on water and listing to one side and winds the Coast Guard estimated reached 140 mph. Life rafts can get torn apart. Lifeboats become impossible to drop into the sea.
South Carolina was expecting sunshine Tuesday after days of inundation, but it will still take weeks for the state to return to normal after being pummeled by a historic rainstorm.
Another day of heavy rain drenched an already inundated South Carolina on Monday as rescue teams went door-to-door to check on people in swamped neighborhoods and authorities surveyed a statewide road system torn apart by historic flooding.
Hundreds were rescued from fast-moving floodwaters Sunday in South Carolina as days of driving rain hit a dangerous crescendo that buckled buildings and roads, closed a major East Coast interstate route and threatened the drinking water supply for the capital city.
The White House is announcing the designation of two new National Marine Sanctuaries — the first chosen in 15 years — as part of President Barack Obama’s efforts to protect the environment.