Family of six drown while fleeing Hurricane Harvey floods

A family of six likely drowned in their van Sunday afternoon while trying to escape floods caused by Hurricane Harvey.

Relatives told KHOU that four children, Daisy Saldivar, 6, Xavier Saldivar, 8, Dominic Saldivar, 14, Devy Saldivar, 16, and their great-grandparents, Manuel Saldivar, 84, and wife Belia Saldivar, 81, perished Sunday.

Witnesses told the local station that the van crossed a bridge in Greens Bayou before it was swept into the current. First responders were said to be nearby, but they didn’t have enough time to carry out a rescue operation.

The driver of the van, the children’s great-uncle, managed to escape before the vehicle became submerged. KSAT reported that he survived the ordeal by grabbing onto a tree branch. Though he instructed the children to exit the van through the back door, they were helpless against the rising waters.

KHOU noted that this is the deadliest incident tied to the Hurricane Harvey. Houston police Chief Art Acevedo recently told the Associated Press that he’s “really worried about how many bodies we’re going to find” in light of the storm.

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The local station pointed out that authorities have yet to confirm the family’s death because they have yet to recover any bodies.

As of right now, a total of eight deaths in the Houston area have been attributed to Tropical Storm Harvey.

[Featured Image: KHOU]