Drone Captures Coffins Floating in Texas Cemetery After Tropical Storm Imelda Causes Severe Flooding

A drone has captured eerie footage of coffins floating in a Texas cemetery after Tropical Storm Imelda caused severe flooding in the state.

The pilot, Gary Naquin, witnessed the scene as he flew his drone over a cemetery in Orangefield, Orange County—where some of his relatives are buried—to inspect the damage, 12News reported.

Imelda brought huge amounts of rainfall to some parts of southeastern Texas—where Orange County is located—flooding plots at Mary Williams Cemetery and causing coffins to float to the surface.

One casket was even found more than half a mile away from the cemetery at the intersection of Cajun Way and Oilla Road, according to authorities. Orange County officials say they have secured the coffin and are in the process of returning it to the cemetery.

Imelda made landfall near Freeport, Texas, on September 19, with maximum sustained wind speeds of 40 miles per hour.

The storm dumped so much rain that it has become the fifth-wettest tropical cyclone ever to strike the contiguous U.S. and the fourth-wettest to affect the state of Texas.

More than 40 inches of rain fell on some parts of the state, producing record-breaking floods that damaged hundreds of homes and buildings in southeast Texas.

The number of deaths linked to the storm stands at five, according to authorities. One of those killed was 52-year-old Mark Dukaj from Florida, who died after floodwaters seeped into his stranded pickup truck on Interstate 10, near Beaumont, a Jefferson County spokesperson said.

Investigators don't believe that Dukaj drowned, however, they say his death is likely to be storm-related—although this cannot be confirmed until an autopsy is performed, the Associated Press reported.

As floodwaters recede, several sections of road in southeast Texas and some schools districts will remain closed through part of this week.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will visit southeast Texas on Monday to inspect the damage caused by the storm. Despite the widespread flooding and Texas Governor Greg Abbot's declaration of a state of emergency in the region as the storm made landfall, the state is currently below the threshold to receive federal disaster funding, 12News reported.

According to State Rep. Joe Deshotel, around $3 million in damages has been reported—well below the FEMA requirement of $37.7 million. However, as more damage is reported, this threshold may be reached later on in the week.

Tropical Storm Imelda flooding
People walk through flooded waters on September 19, 2019 in Houston, Texas. Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images
Drone Captures Coffins Floating in Texas Cemetery After Tropical Storm Imelda Causes Severe Flooding | U.S.