Houston is facing worsening historic flooding in the coming days as Tropical Storm Harvey dumps more rain on the city, swelling rivers to record levels and forcing federal engineers on Monday to release water from area reservoirs in hopes of controlling the rushing currents.
Harvey was the most powerful hurricane to strike Texas in more than 50 years when it came ashore on Friday near Corpus Christi, about 220 miles (354 km) south of Houston, and has killed at least two people. It has since lingered around Texas’ Gulf Coast, where it is forecast to remain for several more days, drenching parts of the region with a year’s worth of rain in the span of a week.
Rains have submerged cars and turned freeways into rivers, with more flooding expected when the storm shifts back in the direction of Houston. Harvey’s center was 90 miles (148 km) southwest of Houston on Monday morning and forecast to arc slowly toward the city through Wednesday, with the worst floods expected later that day and on Thursday.
Schools, airports and office buildings in the nation’s fourth largest city were shut on Monday as chest-high water filledsome neighborhoods in the low-lying city that is home to about 2.3 million people.
The metropolitan area, home to 6.8 million people, also is the nation’s refining and petrochemical hub, which has been crippled by the storm. Numerous refiners shut operations, likely for weeks.
Meanwhile, President Trump said he may return to storm zone on Saturday, possibly making a stop in Louisiana. Trump says it will be
Trump noted it will be very expensive proposition to pay for hurricane recovery efforts and that he will be talking to Congress about it.
Going to a Cabinet Meeting (tele-conference) at 11:00 A.M. on #Harvey. Even experts have said they've never seen one like this!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 27, 2017