LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — While residents in some Western and Plains states were digging out Friday after an early blast of snow, heavy rain and strong winds that toppled trees, power lines and church steeples lashed parts of the South, leaving three people dead.
The rain was forecast to let up Friday, but the National Weather Service cautioned that the ground was so saturated that even a modest amount of additional rain could cause flash flooding from the western Gulf Coast to the mid-Mississippi Valley.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declared a state of emergency after storms caused flooded roads, power outages and wind damage in the northwestern part of the state. A 20-year-old driver was killed Thursday when his car ran under a toppled tree near Shreveport, authorities said.
A man in North Little Rock, Ark., was found in a submerged vehicle and was pronounced dead at a hospital, Pulaski County Coroner Garland Camper said. Kenny Raines, 50, had driven into the high water Thursday night, police said.
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In northeast Arkansas, the body of 38-year-old Eric Brashers of Batesville was found Friday morning after he was swept away from his truck by floodwaters, Independence County Sheriff Keith Bowers said.
Meanwhile, the snowstorm that walloped Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, South Dakota, Nebraska and Kansas earlier in the week tapered off, but some roads across the region remained treacherous.
Gusty winds and blowing snow kept nearly all major highways in southeast Wyoming shut down.
In northern Colorado, northbound Interstate 25 from Wellington to the Wyoming state line remained shut down, while highways in eastern Colorado and western Kansas, including Interstates 70 and 76, reopened.
Winter weather advisories remained in effect Friday for southeast Wyoming and western Nebraska.
Meanwhile, flood warnings stretch from the western Gulf Coast to the Great Lakes, with flash flood warnings in effect for eastern Arkansas, western Tennessee, Western Kentucky and southeast Missouri.
Several tornadoes touched down in Louisiana and Arkansas on Thursday. A steeple blew off a church in Shreveport, La., hitting a car. The 57-year-old driver had to be pulled out by rescuers and suffered broken bones, authorities said.