Harvey beyond Houston: Possible tornado causes damage in Alabama
A possible tornado caused minor injuries and left behind damages in Alabama Thursday, as flooding prompted officials in Tennessee to urge some residents to evacuate.
The storm impacted several homes in Reform, Alabama, according to the Associated Press. Photographs showed downed and splintered trees and homes with their shingles torn away. One mobile home was so shattered that it was barely recognizable.
Officials with the Nashville Office of Emergency Management urged people to leave an area near Whites Creek between Tucker Road and Buena Vista Pike Thursday, according to a Facebook post. The evacuation is not mandatory, but officials say police will go door-to-door to encourage residents to evacuate.
Flooding also posed a problem at Grace Healthcare Nursing Home, where residents had to be evacuatedThursday, WSMV.com reports.
Baptist Hospital had to evacuate its patients and shut down emergency services Thursday after the city lost its water supply due to flooding on the Neches River.
"Due to the failure of the city's water pump, it is in the best interest of our current patients to transfer to other acute care facilities," Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas said in a statement Thursday morning. "Due to the city-wide lack of services, we have no other alternative but to discontinue all services which will include emergency services. This is being done immediately."
"The hospital needs about 50,000 gallons of water a day to run," hospital medical director Ali Osman told weather.com. "The hospital administration tried to procure that water from water tankers, state and local resources. So far, we are unable to.
"We started with maybe 260 patients, we are down to 193 patients," he added. "We are evacuating the sickest of our patients first, intubated patients, patients who need dialysis. Thing are serious...come Saturday or Sunday, we still don't have any water, the bad situation will turn into a disaster."
Baptist Beaumont Hospital spokeswoman Mary Poole told KHOU that the hospital is working with HCA Healthcare to move patients to facilities that system has in the Houston suburb of Pasadenaand elsewhere.
“The pump station is located along the Neches River and draws water from the river as the main source of water for the City’s water system,” the city said in a statement Thursday morning. “The City has also lost the secondary water source at the Loeb wells in Hardin County. At this time there is no water supply for the City water system.”
Workers will have to wait for floodwaters to recede to determine the damage before repairs can be made, Beaumont Fire-Rescue Capt. Brad Pennison told KFDM, and there is no way at this time to determine how soon repairs can be made.
"Seriously bad news,” councilman Mike Getz posted on Facebook at 1 a.m. Thursday. “The City of Beaumont will be without water for the next several days. Fill your bathtubs with water now."
According to the Beaumont Enterprise, one commenter on the post asked Getz if he thought the city or FEMA would set up water stations.
"I know, it is going to be a difficult situation," he replied. " I am confident that the City will make arrangements to truck in water."
Social media posts show residents standing in long lines to buy bottled water Thursday morning as well as filling up coolers with ice.
Beaumont Mayor Becky Ames told NBC's The Today Show that every body of water citywide is overflowing. A voluntary evacuation was issued for areas of north Beaumont for about 1,000 families, and Exxon closed its Beaumont Refinery.
Port Arthur, Texas
As major flooding worsened, officials took to social media to beg anyone with a boat to come to the city to rescue stranded residents Wednesday morning. Evacuees posted photos of flooding inside emergency shelters, with the water rising up to almost the level of the cots on which they slept overnight. Those who needed rescue were instructed to display a white towel, shirt or other object to alert crews.
Seniors at the Golden Years retirement home were evacuated by airboat Wednesday afternoon after the facility was flooded, according to the Associated Press. The residents were sheltering on the second floor of the retirement home as floodwaters rose, but were removed one-by-one by the Louisiana Army National Guard and agents from the Florida Wildlife Commission, the report added.
Resident Mike Henry told AP he was woken up out of his sleep Tuesday by rain falling so hard it sounded like a "power washer." Water had risen in his yard and quickly began seeping into his home.
"I kept marking it on the wall, every 15 minutes," said Henry. The water leveled off at 1 foot.
Marathon announced it was shutting down its Galveston Bay refinery Wednesday morning amid the threat of continued widespread flooding in the area. In the historic downtown area, floodwaters were three feet deep Tuesday as the relentless rainfall submerged seemingly every road. "We're getting our share of it today," City Manager Brian Maxwell told the Galveston County Daily News. "It's everywhere right now."
The Texas/Louisiana Border
Authorities were forced to close Interstate 10 at the border Wednesday morning because swollen waterways left the area virtually isolated, according to the AP. Numerous highways and secondary roads were also closed because of flooding, the report added. Some drivers were stranded for up to 24 hours, the AP also said.
More than 19,000 were left without power in Memphis Thursday, according to the Associated Press.
Authorities with the local Emergency Management Agency have been monitoring the storm and are ready to deploy staff and resources. Crews were sent out to clear debris from storm drains ahead of time and residents were asked to clear gutters at their homes.
Navy Prepares Emergency Response
The U.S. Navy said it is preparing two ships – the USS Kearsarge and USS Oak Hill – to be positioned off the coast of Texas and Louisiana if needed. The ships would be used to help with recovery efforts, USNI News said.
Residents Evacuated, Shelter Offered in Louisiana
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said 500 people were rescued overnight Monday in flooding in and around Lake Charles. Tuesday he said that the state is offering shelter to its own residents as well as some victims from Texas who were rescued from floodwaters overnight. Texas officials reportedly have 48 hours to accept the offer and transport flood victims to shelters in Louisiana.
Rockport and Port Aransas
Residents returned to survey the damage to their properties. Many have been dealing with the painful reality of seeing their destroyed homes for the first time.
State Highway 105 is in danger of collapsing entirely due to possible water underneath the asphalt in one area, Police Chief Darrel Broussard told the Houston Chronicle. The roadway is shut down between Farm-to-Market Road 1725 and the 105 Bypass. The Texas Department of Transportation is aware of the problem. Broussard says it's "going to be a while" before the road is safe to drive on again.