Rockport, Texas, a town of 10,000 took the brunt of Hurricane Harvey’s wrath.
Two days after Harvey made landfall, Rockport is a devastated ghost town. Buildings, businesses and homes have been destroyed by 130+ mile per hour winds followed by flooding.
There has been a complete and utter breakdown of all infrastructure that keeps the town and outlying areas functioning.
No electricity, water, or sewage services. People have nowhere to go within their hometown.
This is a microcosm of what may be in store for Houston, the fourth largest city in America.
Houston has had 24 inches of rain in the last 24 hours and more rain is expected over the next several days according to meteorologists.
They are calling this a once in a 1,000 year or more storm event.
Katrina had its devastating floods but most of it concentrated in the lower lying areas like the Lower 9th Ward, home to about 14,000 African-Americans. 12 years later, over 60% of this neighborhood still lies vacant.
Houston, as far as I know, is being flooded from end to end.
I’m trying to get a mental picture of what that means, especially in view that the tropical storm is now basically dumping water continually over the same areas over long periods of time.
Just where are all these people who are being rescued being taken?
I would imagine there are tens of thousands of citizens in need of shelter. I just watched a newscast where the reporter was told that there was a trailer park where there were over 1,000 people who were stranded and needed to be evacuated. That’s just one small location in this massive metropolis.
I get the idea that most newscasts have not been able to accurately describe the severity of what may be in store for the people of Houston.
Several streets in downtown Houston are impassable and the freeways leading throughout the city are flooded making any kind of exodus next to impossible.
Business as usual will not be the case anytime soon. People are just not going back to their homes and if they do, most will find that they are uninhabitable.
This is not a case of calling Stanley Steemer and having them dry your home out and change the carpets, and then going to work a couple of days later.
Most homes will more than likely end up with black mold rendering them useless. Homeowners throughout the city may not even have flood insurance. They will return to find they have probably lost everything.
Where do they go?
Remember all the poor people of New Orleans after Katrina?
Many of them were put into Greyhound buses, without their beloved pets, and only as much personal possessions that they could fit in a backpack.
They had no idea where they were going or what tomorrow held for them.
Many came to El Paso with a few even deciding to make our city home after having spent some time here.
After the shock of having been violently uprooted from everything they knew — lives they built, businesses they ran, schools their children went to, neighbors and family they had barbecues on weekends with, churches they worshipped at — they found it all gone in the space of a few days.
This is what we are witnessing from the comfort of our sofas here at home while we watch CNN and Fox News.
And Harvey isn’t just affecting the poorest of the poor the way Katrina did.
Harvey is laying waste to every corner of Houston, rich and poor and middle class. And its not done yet.
This is a city whose residents will be reeling for some time to come.
Pray for the people of Houston and everyone who has the unfortunate luck of living within the path of this terrifying display of Mother Nature at her worst.
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