August 28, 2017 8:24 AM
Houston takes a major catastrophe in stride.
From: Jack Rains, a Houstonian
Monday, August 28, 2017 12:38 AM
Friends from out of state and overseas have asked for a summary of Harvey’s impact on Houston. This is a pass along from a friend, with my additions and editorial comments. It was done hastily, I am tired, and I am sure I have made mistakes so you all, Houstonians in particular, are my ‘fact checkers’.
Both Houston airports have been under two separate tornado warnings and are closed. Every major road in Houston (Harris County) shut down. Ben Taub, the public hospital, is being evacuated. I was told there is only one way out of adjacent Brazoria county because every other way is under water. Road closing are a major problem and worsening until the water can drain to the Gulf.
20,000 cruise passengers are stranded in the gulf. Every waterway from Houston to the coast predicted to reach major flood stage within the next two days.
Most schools postponed until September 5 or 6. Every creek and bayou still rising. Tornado warning for many areas, and it’s still raining. Two flood control dams west of the city are releasing 4 to 6 feet of water in the next 12 hours into Buffalo Bayou which flows through Memorial, River Oaks, downtown and the Houston Ship channel on the way to the Gulf. Braes Bayou is out of its banks and Meyerland is seriously flooded. Southeast Houston is seriously flooded. Record rain falls have been recorded, some totaling 5 feet, yes feet , of water.
So far, we’ve been blessed. We are dry, have plenty of water and have power. Everyone south of Hwy 6 and west of 288 are under mandatory evacuation. Senna plantation and several of the leveed communities are facing mandatory and/or voluntary evacuation orders in Ft. Bend Territories to the West. The Brazos River is nearing an 800 year flood record. Two separate reservoirs. Addicks and Barker, are about to release water to avoid breaking. This will cause even more massive flooding that will put people out of their homes, perhaps for MONTHS!
I have friends that have water in their homes. Say prayers for safe rescues. Helicopters are plucking people from roofs, and a fleet of volunteers from Louisianan and across Texas are making a major impact on evacuations. The rescue effort is on the scale of The Dunkirk evacuation.
For my non-Houston friends- to help you understand the devastation:
Houston is huge. The greater metropolitan area is circled by the Grand Parkway – which is 170 miles long. That makes the area of the circle inside the Grand Parkway over 2200 sq. miles.
2200 square miles of densely inhabited, urban and suburban, areas is flooded. Harris County, excluding Houston, and the city of Houston each have nearly 2 million in population. The metropolitan area includes Harris, Ft Bend ,Montgomery and Chambers counties. It excludes adjacent Galveston County..
Imagine if the entire state of Delaware, with twice the population of Manhattan, was under water.
It’s still raining.”
Texans are folks who persevere; we will take this catastrophic disaster in stride.
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