U.S. Weather

Disaster Declaration Extended to Cover All of Rhode Island

  • New England Flooding

    March 31: A car plows through a section of flooded road on Route 102 in Raymond, N.H. Flooding on a scale rarely seen in New England forced hundreds of residents from their homes Wednesday, overwhelmed sewage systems and snarled traffic as major East Coast routes washed out or transformed into a soaked labyrinth of detours and closures. (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter)

  • Street Flooding

    March 31: A vehicle drives through a flooded street next to the Pawtuxet River in Cranston, R.I. The Pawtuxet River hit a record stage of 20.7 feet, almost 12 feet above flood stage. (AP Photo/Stew Milne)

WARWICK, R.I.   -- Rhode Island Gov. Don Carcieri  and the flooded state's Emergency Management Agency say the president has approved their request to amend a federal major disaster declaration, meaning the entire state now is considered a disaster area.

President Obama had already declared a disaster in much of Rhode Island, triggering federal aid. The declaration was extended Friday to the last remaining area, Bristol County.

Federal Emergency Management Agency teams worked for two days to assess the damage there.

Carcieri says he'd like to express his appreciation to Obama and U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano for their support and swift action.

Napolitano took a helicopter tour over Rhode Island on Friday, witnessing waterlogged shopping malls and homes with people's possessions laid out to dry in their yards.