Nearly 20 inches of rain have fallen in the Houston, Texas, area since Sunday night—a record-breaking amount of rain which has caused flooding across the area. At least five people have died in cars that were submerged by floodwater, hundreds of people have been displaced from their homes, and thousands of people are currently without power.
Houston has declared a state of emergency:
"This is a life-threatening emergency," the city said on an emergency website. "Houston residents should avoid travel at all costs today."Harris County emergency crews have performed more than a thousand high-water rescues, and are still working to rescue people trapped in the 1,000+ homes which have been flooded. Mayor Turner assured people who are stranded that help is on the way: "There's flooding in every part of Houston. We will rescue you."
At least 200 flights were canceled at the city's Hobby Airport, and nine hospitals closed their doors to new patients as the National Weather Service warned of potential deadly flash floods through Monday night. Further rain and thunderstorms are expected to continue through Tuesday evening.
"This is an unprecedented amount of rain," said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner in a press conference.
The full extent of the damage is unknown, especially as even more rain is yet expected.
My thoughts are with you, Houston metropolitan area.
Surely, ways to help support people affected will be forthcoming later today and in subsequent days. Please feel welcome and encouraged to leave suggestions in comments.
If you want to do something right now: As always, where there is flooding, there will be a strain on local animal rescue resources. Houston has a number of local shelters, all of whom would definitely welcome donations.