Wednesday (4/20/16) 10pm Situation Update:
Harris County ESD 48 Fire Department (HCESD 48) has responded to 98 emergency calls over the past 74 hours and our Emergency Operations Center at 1773 Westgreen Blvd was activated when the storm event began Sunday night (4/17/16) and will continue to operate for at least an additional 24 hour period.
HCESD 48 prepared to deploy an Engine Company to assist agencies on the Northside of the county due to the extended period of operations but this crew has remained in service in our district and has not been deployed by Harris County Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management as of this evening.
The National Weather Service (NWS) expects a lull in activity lasting from now until sunrise tomorrow (Thursday) although additional rainfall is likely through Friday with skies clearing at the weekend. Another rain system is expected the reach the area after sunrise but current forecast models expect the impact to be limited.
Water rescues and evacuations are continuing to take place across the county. Local and state resources are now shifting from response to recovery mode to deliver aid to those affected by the floods.
The impacts of this storm event will be ongoing for the next few weeks. Highway 6 and Westheimer Parkway inside the reservoirs are both expected to be closed for up to 30 days. Currently, the Grand Parkway is closed to all traffic north of Clay Road. Several other surface streets in the Mayde Creek, Bear Creek, Cypress Creek and Spring Creek watersheds will experience flooding for several days.
The Harris County Community Services Division has established a flood recovery resource page at http://www.harrisrecovery.org/ This can also be accessed from the main menu bar at http://www.readyharris.org/
The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences is now confirming seven fatalities related to the storm.
The Harris County Sheriff’s Office reports the following:
• 539 individual High Water Rescue Operations (and growing) have been performed
• 225 Civilians rescued by boat
• 18 horses rescued
• 40 canines rescued
Residents are encouraged to monitor local media closely for weather and road conditions updates. Evacuation information will be provided by the Harris and/or Ford Bend counties’ Office of Emergency Management.
CURRENT CONDITION – DAM STRUCTURES
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is monitoring the Addicks and Barker dams and reservoirs on an around-the-clock basis to ensure continued operations and integrity of the structures, which have protected greater Houston area residents against loss of life and property over the last 70 years. USACE Galveston has issued the following information about their operations:
Both dams continue to perform as designed and at this time there are no indications of any issues with the dams.
The Addicks Reservoir reached a record elevation April 18, 2016, and the Barker Reservoir is expected to reach a record elevation April 20, 2016, with both reservoirs peaking early next week.
These water levels (also known as pools) are expected to be the highest pools of record in the 70-year history of the projects. The previous record pools were achieved in 1992.
The inundation models indicate that the reservoirs’ peaks may exceed the government-owned land boundaries by 1 to 2 feet.
The inundation models are based on National Weather Service rainfall predictions. Residents can learn more at http://www.srh.noaa.gov/hgx/
To learn more about the Addicks and Barker Dam Safety Program, visit http://www.swg.usace.army.mil/Missions/DamSafetyProgram.aspx. For more news and information, visit www.swg.usace.army.mil
Due to the recent rains and floods, many of the waterways in our community have become increasingly contaminated with bacteria and toxins from the environment. Health risks that could occur from exposure to these waters include diarrhea, gastrointestinal infections and various bacterial infections, including potentially deadly bacterial infections such as tetanus (lockjaw). Additionally, other unknown dangers may be present in flood waters such as sharp objects, snakes and fire ants.
We wish to thank all of our members as well as the members of our surrounding partners who have taken the extra time away from their families to assist during this storm event. You are a big part of what makes Katy great.