Authorities find body of teen girl swept away by floodwaters near Cottonwood
PHOENIX — The body of 16-year-old Faith Moore was found Wednesday after she was swept away by floodwaters near Cottonwood five days earlier, authorities said.
The body was found near where the Verde River meets a wash, the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said.
Moore called 911 around 9:30 p.m. on Saturday asking for help because her car was stranded in knee-high water, but the water quickly rose to over 8 feet within an hour.
Crews made visual contact with Moore but she was swept out of her car and downstream during the rescue attempt, authorities said.
Police and fire personnel from Cottonwood along with YCSO contributed resources to the search, however air support was not possible until hours later due to a storm in the area.
Ground searches were conducted throughout the night and into the morning in an attempt to find Moore, along with drones from various agencies, a K9 unit and an airboat from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office.
Personal items belonging to Moore were found Sunday, authorities said.
She was the granddaughter of the recently retired fire chief from the Verde Valley Fire District and the retired EMS chief from Verde Valley Ambulance as well as the niece of an active Cottonwood firefighter, authorities said.
Heavy storms over the weekend caused mass flooding and power outages throughout the state.
The Verde Fire Department was working on five other water rescues at the time of the call from Moore, authorities said.
In southeastern Arizona, the body of a 4-year-old Pima girl swept away by floodwaters Thursday night was found Monday.
Drivers are advised not to cross a flooded wash, even if it doesn’t look deep because a few inches of running water could still pose a serious risk.
ADOT also warns people to not drive around road-closed signs as it is not only a risk but violators could be cited under state law.
People are advised to reduce speed and maintain a safe distance between vehicles during storms, avoid sudden braking that can cause sliding on wet pavement as well as reducing speed by slowly taking your foot off the gas pedal and braking slowly.