Sunday, August 27, 2017

A National Catastrophe is Underway in Houston and Southeast Texas

Via Instagram at 11:08am, Downtown Houston

It is difficult to overstate the impact on the United States the catastrophe in southeast Texas 
will have. 
More than 20 inches have fallen on the Houston Metro area with more
than a foot of rain in Beaumont-Port Arthur as of 10am Sunday
Torrential rains continue to fall as of 10:45am Sunday
It took people two days to realize the extent of what occurred in New Orleans because of Katrina. I believe the same is true for what is now occurring in southeast Texas. 

Not only did Hurricane Harvey's winds nearly destroy several small towns in its path, its flooding rains are going to be news for weeks and it will have an effect on the U.S. economy. For example, here is a list of airports that are closed:
The three-letter codes translate to:
  • Corpus Christi
  • Spring, Texas
  • Ellington, Texas (general aviation airport)
  • Grants
  • Houston - Hobby
  • Houston Bush Intercontinental 
  • Aransas Pass (Mustang Beach)
  • San Angelo
Considering the extent of the flooding, it will be some time before some of those airports will be able to reopen because the employees cannot get to their jobs. Shipments and deliveries of crucial goods cannot be made because highways are closed along with the airports. The same is true of other businesses in the Houston metro -- they will be closed for the duration because their employees cannot get to work and shipments cannot be made. The last I heard the Port of Galveston was still closed.

The area from Houston (including the ship channel) to Beaumont-Port Arthur is the largest single area for oil refining and chemical production in our nation. The plants and refineries will be closed for days, at best. Rail lines throughout the region are closed. Track will have to be rebuilt because of washouts. That will not occur overnight. Fill your gasoline tank now!

Because of superb storm warnings, the loss of life from the winds of Hurricane Harvey is extraordinary low for a Category 4: Two people the last I heard. It may be a very different story in the flooding with the possibility of significant loss of life.

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