The devastating storm that swept through Texas made a second landfall Wednesday near the Louisiana-Texas border and is drenching the region with rain.
Tropical Storm Harvey is expected to bring winds of 30 to 40 mph and a 2- to 4-foot storm surge along the Louisiana-Texas border. It is threatening to dump an additional 3 to 6 inches from southwestern Louisiana into western Kentucky, the National Hurricane Center said. It’s expected to become a tropical depression by Wednesday night.
While heavy rains have ended in the Houston area, life-threatening flooding will continue in the city east into southwestern Louisiana for the rest of the week, the National Weather Service said.
Before Harvey made landfall around 5 a.m. ET just west of Cameron, Louisiana, two people were killed when a tree fell onto a truck in Jackson County, Texas, an area “particularly hard hit,” officials said.
Louisiana has beefed up its emergency resources, doubling up on high water vehicles, boats and helicopters on duty.
“We are dealing with a state that has already had a lot of rain this summer, so we are very aware and conscious of the potential for flooding,” said Col. Ed Bush, a public affairs officer for the Louisiana National Guard.
Southeastern Texas, including the saturated Houston area, is dealing with the aftermath of the catastrophic storm that has already killed 11 people.
A Houston police sergeant on his way to work and a Beaumont mother swept away by floodwaters were confirmed dead Tuesday.
First responders are loading boat after boat with evacuees, looking for an undetermined number of people who are missing, including six family members whose vehicle was swept away in the floods, and getting ready to face what is hidden under water.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner issued a midnight to 5 a.m. curfew until further notice. He said the move is meant to prevent property crimes at evacuated homes.
‘A glimmer of hope’
Harvey first made landfall late Friday night in Texas as a Category 4 hurricane, lingered for days afterward on the Texas coast and brought unprecedented flooding to the Houston area. An uncounted number of people remain trapped waiting for aid.
From her home in a northeast Houston suburb, Anike Allen has seen neighbors being airlifted as she slowly runs out of food. While her home is not completely flooded, she’s not sure if there’s a way out of her neighborhood.
“The water is receding here, but we are not sure if it’s going to come back,” Allen said.
For the first time since the weekend, authorities say the floodwaters that turned Houston into a city of rivers are slowly receding in some areas.
“We are starting to see a glimmer of hope in what has happened,” Jeff Lindner, the Harris County flood control meteorologist, said at a news conference Tuesday evening. “Things are going to get better.”
But it will be days, even weeks before the massive volume of water — the most rain ever recorded in the continental United States from a tropical storm that made landfall — is completely gone.
‘We help each other out’
Volunteers have come to the Houston region to lend a hand.
Tom Dickers is among those who came hauling their boats from Dallas and San Antonio to evacuate people since Harvey began pounding the city with rain.
“This is what Texans would do. We help each other out,” Dickers said.
At least 9,000 to 10,000 people have been rescued in the Houston region by first responders. Volunteers said they have helped as many as 400 in one day.
Some would just “come crying, just wanting help,” volunteer Bobba Bedri said. “I just felt like I had to get more people out, keep going and keep going.”