Hurricane Harvey

Hurricane Harvey made landfall on the Texas coast Aug. 25, 2017, as a Category 4 storm, with sustained wind speeds over 130 mph. Harvey weakened to a tropical storm and then stalled over the southeast part of the state, leading to a record-setting 50 inches of rain in parts of Houston and causing severe flooding. Many people were rescued from their cars and homes by volunteers called on to help local authorities. At least 70 deaths have been blamed on the storm. Two weeks after it hit, an estimated 32,000 people were still in shelters.   

For ways you can help, click here.  

Chemical Heritage Foundation/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

From Texas Standard:

After hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, housed thousands of storm victims in trailers. The small, white trailers were controversial because some storm survivors lived in them for years, and due to lawsuits alleging that many of the trailers were constructed with toxic materials.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Medical professionals are keeping an eye out for people having difficulty dealing with the trauma of losing their homes during Hurricane Harvey.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

After pushes to bring welcome kits and toys to those affected by Hurricane Harvey in Texas, local organizations are now partnering to bring cleaning supplies to those rebuilding after the unprecedented storm damaged homes across the state.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

A Harvey evacuee at the Delco Center was getting treated for a wound on her head last week when workers discovered she was diabetic.

“The people of CVS immediately ordered the insulin," says Adryana Aldeen, who was volunteering with the Red Cross that day. "She was out of insulin.”

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

When big storms hit, familiar relief organizations like the Red Cross step in to help people in need. But there’s one local group trying to break the mold when it comes to relief.

Michael Marks/Texas Standard

From Texas Standard:

It wasn’t just people who were affected by Hurricane Harvey. Cattle throughout south Texas were also put in harm’s way. But even though the water has receded, the storm’s full effect on the region’s livestock may not be known for some time.

Austin Price for KUT

Texas will be cleaning up and rebuilding from Hurricane Harvey for a long time, and Hurricane Irma is getting ready to hit Florida hard. When a natural disaster strikes, many people have an immediate urge to help. But as the waters – and news coverage – subside, so can attention. 

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Like thousands of Hurricane Harvey victims, Patricia Belcher spent her time last week in limbo. She and her family were stuck in a shelter in Austin after the managers of her Victoria apartment complex called with bad news.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

Wendy Rivera sat on a metal folding chair outside the shelter for Harvey evacuees in Southeast Austin. She shared a 44-ounce convenience store soda with her husband, Ramiro, a soft-spoken and tattooed man, who used his body and a white towel to shade the two from the sun.

Plant Industry, CSIRO/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 3.0)

From Texas Standard:

It’s clean-up time at the home where Ron Gertson is staying. He’s taking refuge at his brother’s house because his house is uninhabitable at the moment. It is full of flood water from Hurricane Harvey.

Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

On Wednesday, the House easily approved nearly $8 billion in short-term funds for areas hit by Hurricane Harvey. Meanwhile, members of the Texas congressional delegation from both parties are working together to direct more federal money to the Gulf Coast, and to influence the way they are spent.

Michael Marks/Texas Standard

From Texas Standard:

When Hurricane Harvey made landfall, it flattened places like Rockport and Portland. But the massive damage in Houston and the Golden Triangle area came from flooding that occurred after Harvey had been downgraded from a hurricane-force storm.

As the water rose on their first-floor apartment, Rosa Sosa and her family fled to a vacant unit on the second floor. They watched in horror as it continued to rise, as it swallowed most of the cars in the parking lot that rings their sprawling two-story complex, as it stuck around, stubbornly, even after the rain stopped.

Updated at 4:20 p.m. ET

Democratic congressional leaders announced Wednesday that they had reached a deal with President Trump in an Oval Office meeting to pass hurricane relief funding this week, along with measures to push off pressing fiscal deadlines to December — over the apparent objections of Republican leaders.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Standing on the bank of Onion Creek at McKinney Falls State Park, De Ding watches his wife and two kids splash in the water.

“I’ve seen enough water,” he chuckles. But, it's better than the water he was dealing with Houston, he says.

Updated Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2:45 p.m.: This article and its headline have been updated with details of the telethon.


Scooter Braun, the artist manager responsible for cultivating Justin Bieber's career, told the Associated Press last week of his plans for a benefit concert to support those affected by Harvey.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

From Texas Standard:

As the levels in Houston's two main reservoirs continue to drop, many Texans have begun cleaning up their waterlogged homes. And in Baytown, Exxon is rebooting its refinery, the second biggest in the U.S. But there’s much more to do.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

Update – Sept. 7: Mayor Adler is now asking for volunteers to sort toy donations at the Blue Santa warehouse on Industrial Drive. Shifts are today and tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information on volunteer shifts call (512) 974-4719.

Updated at 8:15 p.m. ET

Officials are still trying to confirm whether Texas floodwaters have spread contamination from decades-old toxic waste sites, as water recedes and residents return to homes that, in some cases, were flooded with water that passed over known contaminated areas.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

An 8-foot-tall shelf. That’s what it would have taken to keep Dolores Martinez's belongings dry in La Grange.

Martinez, 53, and her family had nearly 8 feet of water in their home when the nearby Colorado River crested at nearly 30 feet above its banks Monday. Then-Tropical Storm Harvey brought a level of flooding some who have lived their whole lives here say they’ve never seen before.

Volunteer Chiquita Harris sorts items to be placed in welcome baskets for evacuees at Operation Warm Welcome over the weekend.
Austin Price for KUT

When Mayor Steve Adler recently did an instructional video on how to make welcome kits for incoming evacuees from Hurricane Harvey, everyday items like pillows, soap and a comb were included, but there were some items that weren’t considered.

Flooding from Hurricane Harvey has been widespread across Houston, Texas, and surrounding areas. While the storm has dissipated, water remains in many homes.

People are starting to return to the Nottingham Forest subdivision, an upscale area located just north of Buffalo Bayou, which has been heavily flooded. Homes that are closer to the bayou had anywhere from 2 to 5 feet of flooded water on Thursday. A lot of that flooding resulted from a controlled release of water from nearby reservoirs.

The devastation of Harvey has neighbors and strangers helping one another. Brigades of volunteers have come to Texas. They've loaded up their boats for rescues and packed trailers full of food and water to help people who no longer have homes.

In his hometown of Orange, Texas, Epi Mungui is overseeing a makeshift distribution center in the middle of a sweltering hot strip center parking lot.

Updated at 7:40 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is asking Congress for nearly $8 billion in Hurricane Harvey aid as the search-and-rescue phase is slowly giving way to recovery more than a week after the storm slammed into southeastern Texas.

Trump visits Texas and Louisiana

President Trump made his second trip to the region Saturday, beginning in Houston with a visit to the NRG Center, which is serving as a shelter for Harvey victims.

Martin do Nascimento/KUT

When storms hit a community, it’s up to a select group of people to stay at work.

First responders might come to mind. But there are also the folks who keep the lights on as long as they can, and then fix them once they’re down. Those workers need food, and many in and around Corpus Christi were able to find it from a familiar place just after the storm.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

After Hurricane Harvey, some state officials are insisting there is no shortage of gasoline in Texas. 

The record rains and flooding limited the state's oil refining capacity, which has led to long lines at gas stations across Texas. But while drivers worry of a possible gas shortage in the near future, Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton said the problem is really just a matter of logistics and demand.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

From Texas Standard:

Thousands of people are finding their way to dry blankets and warm socks in shelters all across Texas. Dallas expects to host as many as 10,000 people fleeing Harvey; in Austin, as many as 7,000. Donations keep trickling in.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Many people are looking for ways to help survivors of Hurricane Harvey and the flooding that followed. Here are a few things you can do this long holiday weekend:

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Addi Reichle, 7, stood in the back of her family’s SUV and helped unload diapers, socks, underwear and pillows.

“Can you take two?” she asked her 3-year-old brother, Jude. He obliged, grabbing a second pair of socks to add to an ever-growing hill.

Casey Cheek/Texas Standard

From Texas Standard:

Texas Standard has been traveling along the Gulf Coast in the aftermath of Harvey: first Corpus Christi, then Galveston, and today, Beaumont. 

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