Fatality confirmed in Vermont flooding amid extreme weather nationwide


(NEW YORK) — Authorities in Vermont announced Thursday that one person was killed during this week’s flooding.

Stephen Davoll, 63, from Barre City, died Wednesday as a result of a drowning accident in his home, the Vermont Department of Health said. Davoll is the first confirmed fatality in the state related to this week’s storms and flooding.

The death comes as extreme weather continues to ravage the country, with heat waves in the West, and severe storms in the Midwest and East.

Severe storms spawned multiple tornadoes across northern Illinois on Wednesday evening that knocked down trees, ripped off roofs and disrupted hundreds of flights in the Chicago area.

There were at least five reported tornadoes in the Prairie State — two in Cook County and one each in DuPage, Kane and McHenry counties. One of the twisters that touched down in Cook County reportedly damaged warehouses on the west side of Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Damage to homes and other buildings were reported elsewhere, according to the National Weather Service.

More than 170 flights departing O’Hare International Airport were canceled while over 500 were delayed on Wednesday, according to the flight tracking service FlightAware.

There were two other reported tornadoes in Iowa and Michigan, with reports of damage in the latter, as well as damaging straight-line winds over 70 miles per hour recorded from Texas to Michigan. There were also numerous reports of golf ball-sized hail in Missouri, Nebraska and Kansas.

The dangerous weather on Wednesday evening was part of a storm system moving through the midwestern United States. The severe threat shifts back into the Northeast on Thursday, stretching from Kentucky to Vermont.

Damaging winds, large hail and even tornadoes will be possible along the storm system’s projected path, which includes the cities of Cincinnati, Ohio; Charleston, West Virginia; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Binghamton, New York; Albany, New York; and Burlington, Vermont.

A flood watch has been issued for parts of New York, Vermont and New Hampshire. Vermont’s capital, Montpelier, was already hit by historic rainfall and flooding earlier this week.

Thursday’s threat of heavy rainfall and flooding will persist into the weekend for the Northeast, including the Interstate 95 travel corridor. The latest forecast shows an additional 3 to 5 inches of rain is possible across northern New England, including Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

Meanwhile, millions of Americans across 15 U.S. states are under heat alerts for Thursday, from Washington to Florida. The heat index could surpass 115 degrees Fahrenheit in the mid-South, the Gulf Coast and Florida, with potentially record high temperatures from Houston to Miami.

On Wednesday, temperatures in Phoenix reached 110 degree Fahrenheit for the 13th straight day, putting Arizona’s capital on track to break the record 18-day streak that was set in 1974.

The latest forecast shows the heat is only going to get worse and won’t ease for at least another week, with temperatures across the Southwest expected to peak over the weekend. An excessive heat watch will be in effect for Burbank, California, from Friday through Monday as temperatures could top 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

Hospitals nationwide have seen emergency department visits for heat-related illness more than double over the past month, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

ABC News’ Youri Benadjaoud contributed to this report.

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