Texas' Brazos River surges to century high, Houston braces for floods

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Texas' Brazos River surges to century high, Houston braces for floods
Flood waters from the rain-swollen Brazos River continue to rise in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
A house is flooded by water from the rain-swollen Brazos River in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
Flood waters from the rain-swollen Brazos River continue to rise in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
Honorina Paniagua sits on the upper step of her mobile home as flood waters continue to rise in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
Alejandra Ventura lifts her dog out of the water as the Brazos River tops its banks and floods a mobile home park in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
Alejandra Ventura walks through high water as the Brazos River tops its banks and floods a mobile home park in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
A mobile home park is flooded by the rain-swollen Brazos River in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
Jeff Harper drives his boat on the rain-swollen Brazos River near Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
A mobile home park lies flooded as the Brazos River approaches its crest in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
A mobile home lies almost completely underwater after heavy rains in Richmond, Texas, U.S. May 31, 2016. Precipitation was expected to intensify over the weekend as moisture from tropical depression Patricia, which struck the Pacific coast of Mexico on Friday as a very powerful hurricane, meets with a storm system coming from the west and over Texas. REUTERS/Daniel Kramer
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SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) - The Brazos River in Texas surged to its highest in more than a century in an area outside of Houston on Wednesday after floods killed at least six people, damaged hundreds of buildings and turned roads into lakes over the past week.

The National Weather Service (NWS) issued a flash flood watch for large parts of the state, includes sections near Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin and San Antonio. Storms lasting until the weekend could send even more rivers over their banks, it said.

The NWS reported the Brazos River, which winds over 840 miles across Texas, reached levels not seen since 1913 about 30 miles (50 kms) southwest of Houston, the fourth most populous city in the United States.

Brazos River Rises To Record Levels

Houston has activated its emergency operations center as forecasters warned of heavy rains and flooding. Emergency shelters were opened in the Houston area.

Flooding around Houston in April left eight people dead and damaged some 1,500 homes.

In the most recent floods, hundreds of people across the state have fled their homes.

"It's scary, we have never had anything like this before," said Mary Hernandez of Richmond in metropolitan Houston, where evacuations were underway.

Evacuation orders have been issued for parts of Rosenberg, another town along the Brazos and not far from Richmond.

More than 120 high-water boat rescues from buildings and cars have been reported in Fort Bend County, southwest of Houston.

Several rivers in southeastern and eastern Texas were in a major flood stage. While relatively rare, forecasters have seen a number of such events in Texas over the past year, said National Weather Service meteorologist Patrick Burke.

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