Hurricane Irene 2011: Virginia Child Brings Death Toll to 5

 @MarkJohansonIBT
on August 27 2011 4:18 PM
Don Hurtig looks over an oak tree that blew over in his front yard as Hurricane Irene comes ashore near Morehead City, North Carolina
Resident Don Hurtig looks over an oak tree that blew over in his front yard as Hurricane Irene comes ashore near Morehead City, North Carolina August 27, 2011. Hurricane Irene howled ashore in North Carolina with heavy winds, rain and surf on Saturday on a path threatening the densely populated U.S. East Coast with flooding and power outages. Reuters

***UPDATED at 4:40pm EST Saturday, Aug. 27

The death toll from Hurricane Irene has risen to five after a boy in Newport News, Virginia went missing when a tree crashed into his apartment complex.

Officer Holly McPherson of the Newport News police department said that authorities were waiting for cranes to arrive to remove the tree. WAVY News reports that the child was asleep in bed at the time.

Hurricane Irene slammed into the North Carolina Coast early Saturday morning before barreling up the coast into Virginia.

In it's wake, it left four dead in North Carolina, according to Mid Atlantic Emergency Management officials.

The storm blew a large tree limb onto a man, killing him while he was walking outside his home in a rural area of Nash County. When emergency crews arrived, the man could not be saved. At the time, wind gusts in the area were approaching 60 mph as Irene's outer bands passed through.

A farmer in Nash County, North Carolina was feeding his livestock when he too was struck by a tree limb. When emergency officials arrived at the scene, he was pronounced dead.

Over in Pitt County, North Carolina, a driver lost control of his vehicle in the storm, hitting a tree head on. The man was pronounced dead at the scene.

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According to emergency management spokesman Enie Seneca, a man in Onslow County, North Carolina passed away from a heart attack while boarding up his house in preparation for the storm.

Officials up and down the East Coast are warning residents to stay inside and take the storm seriously. Though Irene has weakened to a Category 1 storm on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, forecasters warn that it is no less deadly.

With hurricane-force winds extending out 90 miles from the storm center and tropical-storm-force winds extending out up to 260 miles, Irene is a large and powerful storm.

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