Irene Cuts Off Dozens of Towns

As Hurricane Irene’s death toll soars to 44, Vermont struggles to deal with flooding. Dozens of towns in Vermont have been cut off, while at least three in New York have suffered the same fate. As roads and bridges were inundated with water, residents have no place to go. The devastation in Vermont due to flooding is fast becoming the state’s worst natural disaster since 1927. Although Vermont Emergency Management said water is receding statewide, the department said severe hazards remain. Three people have been confirmed dead in the storm. A woman was swept away by the floods, and the body of one of two men who went missing while checking the city of Rutland's water system has been recovered. The authorities had reported the death of a child earlier but have since rescinded the claim. Some 43,000 homes and businesses are without power. Gov. Peter Shumlin reviewed the storm’s damage from helicopter after calling it “a full-blown flooding catastrophe.”