Four Key Effects of the Houston Floods

Record amounts of rain have fallen in Texas since Hurricane Harvey hit on Friday. The immediate impacts may be obvious – people having to leave home, states of emergency, burst dams, streets underwater and at least nine deaths connected to the storm – but further down the line this will continue to reverberate.

Here are four key areas that will be affected by the storm:


In some areas, 48 inches (122cm) of rain has fallen. That compares to an average yearly rainfall of 49.77 inches and explains the flooded streets, homes and businesses.

More than 30,000 people are temporarily homeless and of those who have been able to stay in their homes, tens of thousands were left without electric power.

Tens of thousands of people stayed overnight in shelters at the weekend, 9,000 of them in a convention centre that was opened up for them and hundreds in a private furniture shop.

Where will they go?

Another Gulf Coast disaster might offer a glimpse into Houston’s future. Twelve years ago when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, hundreds of thousands of people were displaced. The city’s population never bounced back; it still stands 50,000 below pre-Katrina levels.

Trees blown over in the street by Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, 2005Image copyrightGETTY IMAGES
Image captionHurricane Katrina caused major wind damage

But Gail Delaughter, who is herself from New Orleans, told the BBC there is one major difference between what happened there and what is happening in Houston.

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