US & Canada

Fort Hood: Texas flood accident kills five US soldiers

The main gate at the U.S. Army post at Fort Hood, Texas is pictured in this undated photograph, obtained on November 5, 2009. Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Four soldiers are still missing after floods swept away a military vehicle during a routine exercise.

Five US soldiers were killed and four are still missing after their vehicle overturned while crossing a flooded riverbank at Fort Hood, Texas.

The Texas Army base said the 2.5-ton vehicle was conducting a routine exercise when it was swept away by the current amid heavy flooding.

Three soldiers were found dead shortly after the incident and two more bodies were recovered late on Thursday night.

Three other soldiers were rescued and are in a stable condition at hospital.

US Maj Gen John Uberti told a news conference on Friday that a search was still under way for four missing soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division.

The Army did not identify those killed as it was still notifying relatives.

Chris Haug, a spokesman for Fort Hood, said the Light Medium Tactical Vehicle was at a low-water crossing when it toppled in a storm-swollen creek.

Aircraft, canine search teams and swift-water rescue watercraft have continued to sweep the 20-mile (32 km) Owl Creek about 12 miles north of the base.

News of the deaths come as torrential rains and flooding continue to grip large swathes of Texas. May saw record-breaking downpours. At least six people have died as a result.

Gov Greg Abbott declared a state of disaster in 31 counties across Texas. Severe storms were expected to hit the state Friday and Saturday, intensifying floods caused by swelling waterways and rivers.