Irene Claims 46 Lives, Hundreds Of Thousands Still Without Power

WARWICK, R.I. (AP) -- Patience is wearing thin among the hundreds of thousands of people up and down the East Coast still waiting for the electricity to come back on after Hurricane Irene knocked out the power last weekend.

With the waters receding across much of the flood-stricken region, homeowners are mucking out their basements and dragging soggy furniture to the curb. People are taking cold showers or washing up at shelters.

Irene has been blamed for at least 46 deaths in 13 states.

Vermont faced flash floods in the Rutland area after 2 to 5 inches of rain fell Thursday. Two highway workers repairing a bridge were stranded on a sandbar in a river and were rescued by helicopter.

The White House has declared a major disaster in Vermont, clearing the way for federal aid.

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