Hurricane Harvey

Here again is a thread for info-sharing, updates, checking in, and sharing additional resources on how we can support those affected by the hurricane and flooding. As always, let's keep the thread image-free. Thanks.

A few items:

George Dvorsky at Gizmodo: Harvey Just Broke the Record for Wettest Tropical Storm in US History.
The National Weather Service is reporting 49.32 inches of total rainfall at a site southeast of Houston, which now marks the greatest accumulation of rainfall ever recorded in the contiguous United States on account of a single tropical storm.

This latest rainfall figure still needs to be verified by other sources, but it's likely to hold — and even increase — given that Harvey is in the midst of making its third landfall, where it's expected to dump even more rain on the already waterlogged states of Texas and Louisiana.

...Harvey's total concentrated rainfall, says Nielsen-Gammon, is 19 times the daily discharge of the Mississippi River — the most of any tropical system ever recorded. This tremendous amount of precipitation has fallen onto an area measuring 20,000 square miles, much of it now underwater.
St. John Barned-Smith and Mike Morris at the Houston Chronicle: [Content Note: Drowning; video may autoplay at link] Houston Police Sgt. Steve Perez Drowns in Harvey Floodwaters.
Steve Perez, a 34-year-veteran of the Houston Police Department, drowned in his patrol car in Harvey floodwaters, a tearful Chief Art Acevedo said Tuesday afternoon.

Perez, days shy of his 61st birthday, was in his patrol car driving to work downtown Sunday morning when he got trapped in high water.

Acevedo said Perez left home at 4 a.m. and spent more than two hours trying to get to his duty station in downtown Houston. When he could not find a path, he followed department protocol and tried to report to the nearest station, in Kingwood.

...Acevedo, with tears in his eyes, said officers believed they had found Perez on Monday night but could not recover his body.

"We could not put more officers at risk for what we knew in our hearts would be a recovery mission," he said. Search and rescue crews, including a dive team and a "Cajun Navy" member, recovered his body from an underpass on Tuesday, Acevedo said.

...The officer's death is the 15th fatality in Texas claimed by Hurricane Harvey or the rains it spawned after making landfall.
Avi Selk and Lindsey Bever at the Washington Post: [CN: Drowning] Six Family Members Swept Away Trying to Flee Harvey. Great-grandparents Manuel and Belia Saldivar and their great-grandchildren Devy, 16; Dominic, 14; Xavier, 8; and Daisy, 6. All lost when the van in which they were trying to escape the floodwaters got into water too deep, lost traction on the road, and floated away.

My condolences to the rest of their family, their friends, and their community. My condolences as well to Officer Perez's family, friends, and colleagues.

I am so deeply sad. I hate that so many of my fellow countrypeople are going through such a horrendous time and there's virtually nothing I can do to support or comfort them.

Tom Dart at the Guardian: Hundreds Feared Cut off by Floods as Harvey Pushes East into Louisiana.
Hundreds of people were feared cut off by rising flood waters on Wednesday as Tropical Storm Harvey spared Houston overnight but moved east, inundating the industrial Texas cities of Beaumont and Port Arthur and making landfall for a second time, coming to shore in south-west Louisiana.

There were reports by local officials of as many as 30 deaths. The toll was expected to rise.

In Port Arthur, near the coast, rescue teams struggled to reach desperate residents.

"Hundreds, if not thousands of people are stranded because of high water," Jeff Branick, a senior administrator in Jefferson County, told the Beaumont Enterprise. "There are people that have crawled into their attic, are on top of the cars because they were not physically able to get on to their roofs."

..."Our whole city is underwater right now but we are coming," Port Arthur mayor Derrick Freeman posted on Facebook overnight.
There is a list of ways to help here. Please feel welcome and encouraged to share additional ways to help in comments.

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