Fourteen people were caught in a flash flood that struck at the Cold Springs Swimming Hole shortly before 3:19 p.m. Saturday local time (6:19 p.m. EDT), sheriff's officials said. An extended family from Flagstaff and Phoenix was playing in the eight-foot deep watering hole when the incident occurred.
Four people were rescued on Saturday and those injured have since been released from the hospital. Nine were dead. The victims range in age from 24-months to in their 60. The search for the remaining missing person, a 27-year-old man was set to resume Monday after it was suspended for the night. Around 40 people from a search and rescue team and a state Department of Public Safety helicopter were involved in the search.
The swimming hole in Arizona
The area in recent months had suffered a series of forest fires that are believed to have created a large amount of debris that washed down through the creek and burst through the swimming hole on Saturday. Nearly an inch of rain is believed to have fallen between 1:15 p.m. and 3:55 p.m. local time on Saturday. The rain caused the fatal flash flood fell 6 to 8 miles north of the scene of the tragedy. The thunderstorm hit about 8 miles upstream along Ellison Creek, which quickly flooded the narrow canyon. Rushing water traveling at around 35 mph and debris struck the group. Many of the roads and trails had already flooded and were closed.