The death toll from catastrophic flooding in eastern Kentucky has reached 15 people.
Gov. Andy Beshear told The Associated Press on Friday that the number is expected to more than double and would “include some children.”
Search and rescue teams backed by the National Guard looked tirelessly for missing people – in helicopters and boats – and Beshear noted that determining the number of people who remain unaccounted for is “tough.”
Over 200 have sought shelter and more than 23,000 Kentucky residents were still without power.
According to tracker PowerOutage.US, 23,185 customers were affected following the deadly floodwaters and mudslides that damaged hundreds of homes and vehicles.
In a tweet, Beshear warned that central and eastern Kentucky remain under a flood watch.
“While rain totals are not expected to be as high, flooding still remains a concern due to saturated grounds. Please stay safe and alert, Kentucky,” he wrote.
The National Weather Service (NWS) in Jackson tweeted that the area would see a “decent break” from Friday night and into Saturday.
“More rain and storms arrive Sunday through Tuesday, with heavy rainfall possible Sunday and Monday,” it said.
The area had already been hit by days of torrential rain and parts of western Virginia and southern West Virginia were also impacted by flooding.
More than 7,500 outages were also shown in Virginia on Friday.
Gov. Jim Justice declared a state of emergency for six counties in West Virginia after severe thunderstorms this week caused significant local flooding.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.