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5 dead in US storm, ‘catastrophic’ flooding expected

Harvey, which made landfall in Texas as a hurricane on Friday, has been downgraded to a tropical storm.

world Updated: Aug 27, 2017 23:21 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Washington
Harvey,tropical storm,Texas
A house left devastated by Harvey in Rockport, Texas on August 26, 2017.(Reuters)

Five people died and many were injured as of Sunday by weather system Harvey, which made landfall on the gulf coast of Texas as a hurricane on Friday but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm.

It has stopped moving and is stalled over Houston and the neighbouring region and is expected to bring “catastrophic flooding” and is “expected to worsen” over the next few days, the National Weather Service said.

Hundreds of people have been rescued and local officials warned residents to stay sheltered and not venture out, especially at night, when danger signs are more difficult to detect.

“This disaster’s going to be a landmark event,” Brock Long, FEMA administrator, told CNN. “This is a storm that the United States has not seen yet.”

President Donald Trump, who has been monitoring the storm closely, tweeted: “Wow - Now experts are calling #Harvey a once in 500 year flood! We have an all out effort going, and going well!”

This is the first natural disaster to test the Trump administration, and he has seemed keen to come through. “.@ChuckGrassley - got your message loud and clear. We have fantastic people on the ground, got there long before #Harvey. So far, so good!,” he tweeted, in response to a warning from a Republican senator, who reminded the president of George W Bush’s failure to prepare for, and react adequately to, Hurricane Katrina that struck seven states in 2005, killing more than 1,800 people.

First Published: Aug 27, 2017 21:09 IST