BLOOMSBURG, Pa. – The swollen Susquehanna River began returning to its banks Friday in Pennsylvania and New York after swamping thousands of homes and businesses in some of the highest floodwaters ever seen. But most of the 100,000 people forced from their homes could do little more than worry as they awaited the all-clear.

“I haven’t even been able to get close to it to see what’s left. I don’t know what we’re going to do,” said Carolyn White, 68, of West Pittston, Pa., who is disabled and uses a scooter to get around. Her son managed to get close enough to see that the first floor of her house was flooded, but that was about all she knew.

The Susquehanna and its tributaries raged out of control after the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee dumped heavy rain on the already-soggy Northeast on Thursday. In many places, the river broke the high-water records set nearly 40 years ago in the catastrophic aftermath of Hurricane Agnes.

Swirling brown waters carried off at least 10 houses in Pennsylvania alone, spilled into basements, lapped at doorsteps and filled some homes to the rooftops, forcing rescues by boat and helicopter and straining the floodwalls that protect some towns. Downstream, communities in Maryland awaited the worst from the still-rising river.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett warned evacuated residents to stay away: “This is still a dangerous time, even though it’s nice and sunny out.”

At least 14 deaths have been blamed on Lee and its aftermath: six in Pennsylvania, three in Virginia, one in Maryland, and four others killed when it came ashore on the Gulf Coast last week. President Obama declared states of emergency in Pennsylvania and New York, opening the way for federal aid.

The central Pennsylvania town of Bloomsburg endured its worst flood in more than a century.

The Susquehanna crested at nearly 42.7 feet Thursday night in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., higher than the record set during Agnes in 1972.