What to Know
- Search crews have been scouring the Passaic River for days in hopes of finding any of three people, including two Seton Hall students, who were swept away by Ida's floodwaters last week and remain missing
- Two bodies have been recovered in the river in just the last 24 hours; investigators have not released any information regarding their identities, which will have to be confirmed by forensic evidence
- More than 40 people in NJ and NY died of Ida-related flooding, officials have said; more than half were in the Garden State
Another body was found in the Passaic River near Newark Thursday, just a day after a similar grim discovery was made less than 4 miles away in Kearny as emergency crews continue their search for three people missing in Ida's floods.
Two of them were college students, friends who vanished together last week.
Reports of a body in the water near Route 21 and Clay Street around 1 p.m. and the ensuing response led to miles-long traffic backups along the key artery that cuts through New Jersey's largest city.
Passaic Mayor Hector Lora was spotted at the scene and looked grim upon arrival.
Local fire chief Pat Trentacost also confirmed the discovery to NJ.com, saying, "We have a body. We are investigating it. No confirmation yet," the website reported.
It was barely 12 hours ago that detectives and a medical examiner were at the Frank Vincent Marina in Kearny, where Hudson County authorities acknowledged that a body found that day could be one of three people swept away last week.
Any determination will require forensic confirmation before an identity is released, officials say.
Search teams using sophisticated underwater sonar have been scouring the Passaic River day in and day out, looking for any of the missing people.
Nidi Rana and Ayush Rana, both Seton Hall students who lived in Passaic, haven't been seen since floodwaters overtook their car near the swollen river during the height of the storm.
Area searchers were also still looking for 56-year-old Donna Lomagro, who was nearly rescued by good Samaritans the night her car was flooded.
The current was too strong.
And with a week gone by since Ida's terrifying flash floods, rescuers know the chances of finding any of the missing three alive are slim.
Both New Jersey and New York, especially the city, were slammed by Ida's monstrous flash floods and record-breaking rainfall days after the storm made landfall as a hurricane in Louisiana. More than 40 people in the two states died of storm-related causes, the vast majority (at least 27) of them in New Jersey.