NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) - The fast rising flood waters forced emergency workers to evacuate two buildings in Newport News, Saturday. In both cases the apartment complex parking lots and properties looked like ponds by the end of the afternoon.
WAVY.com was there as a woman, Jillian, and her dog, Daddy, were rescued by firefighters, placed in a boat, and floated down the water to safety outside the Meridian Parkside Apartments.
"Just in time actually. He's a little scared, but we're okay," says Jillian.
Jillian is one of 60 people evacuated from the apartments by firefighters. Another family also chose to leave Meridian because of the quickly rising waters.
"By the time I turned around, just in the three minutes that it took me to get to the gate and get turned around, the whole community was flooded," says one man.
It was not a good day for cars on the street and first floor apartments.
"We've been here almost three years, never seen anything like this," says the man.
Joseph, of the Great Oaks Apartments in Newport News, says he has seen something like this once before.
"Isabel. It happened then."
He says he couldn't believe what he saw when he woke up.
"When it started raining hard the water started seeping up and coming in the backdoor, front door, side door, all doors. Bedrooms are soaking wet. The shoes and stuff is floating around like it's a boat," says Joseph.
Many Great Oaks apartments were evacuated as well. The elderly were loaded onto buses and taken to a nearby shelter. Katrina Carter was also headed to the shelter. She's worried about the damage to her home.
"I went to get out of bed and I saw this water in my apartment and my apartment, it was about right here," she says showing the water was almost up to her waist.
Katrina is having a tough time believing this is how her Saturday started..
"It was, like, surreal really."
Police say during the Great Oak evacuation, crews found the body of Brittany Hintz, 28, of Newport News. An autopsy will determine what caused her death.
Emergency workers tell WAVY.com the residents of Great Oaks and Meridian Apartments are now at a private shelter at the Midtown Community Center. If you live in Newport News and you do need a public shelter, head to Warwick High School on 51 Copeland Lane.
A police officer says Great Oaks residents will not be allowed back into their apartments until sometime Monday.
Meanwhile in Hampton, the fire department evacuated the Paula Maria Apartments on Martha Lee Drive and the Century Plaza Apartments on Lassiter Drive. Crews used boats and high water vehicles to get people to safety after the heavy rainfall flooded many first floor apartments.
One person went to the hospital for a non-related medical condition. The City opened a shelter at Eaton Middle School for those displaced.
Public Works crews checked the city's drainage systems and reported no blockages. They say the amount rain was just too much for the system to keep up.
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