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It was hard to anticipate the sheer caliber of Hurricane Harvey. In the past few days alone, Houston and other nearby cities were inundated with catastrophic flooding and torrential rain. No one anticipated the amount of rain. About 52 inches of rain drenched the city of Houston. All major highways are closed. Roads turned into rivers. Instead of cars, people are traveling via boats.
Hurricane Ike left behind a lot of wind damage, not so much in terms of rain. And yet, the damage amounts to $37.5 Billion back in 2008. Houston was able to recover from that, the city was prepared. Less than a decade later, and those hopes were literally washed away.
52 inches. Nearly four and a half feet of rain drenched the city of Houston. Meteorologists say that a storm like Harvey comes 1 in 1,000 years. This will also be the costliest hurricane in U.S history. Add that to the growing list of broken records. Hurricane Harvey left behind quite the mess.
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Pictures uploaded, and expressions of shock arise. For the past week, photos and video accounts of the effects of the hurricane have ‘flooded’ my newsfeed. Neighborhoods I used to visit, parks I used to play in, all underwater. It truly is heartbreaking to see my city suffer so much. I know people who are now homeless, their homes full of floodwater. Millions of Houstonians are unable to go to work because all of the major highways are closed. It’s like the apocalypse; no one can get in or out of the city. But this has not deterred the Texan spirit.
The Salvation Army, The American Red Cross, are among the various aid organizations who have rushed to Houston in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Celebrities all across the board like JJ Watt, Beyoncè, and Sandra Bullock, have donated money towards relief efforts in Houston. Every other Facebook post on my newsfeed is a link to donate money towards aid relief. Even the ‘Cajun Navy’ came in to help out Houston. Following Hurricane Katrina, Texas helped out their next door neighbors. Louisiana is returning the favor this time around. Another thing I’ve noticed, is that Texans always help each other out in times of crisis. Scores of stories on my newsfeed are of people just hopping in their boats, and venturing into the floodwaters, trying to see if anyone needs rescuing. This 100% Texan spirit.
As for me, I’ll donate as much as I can, and encourage others to do the same. I honestly felt helpless up here in Dallas. Knowing I couldn’t be there for my family and friends is terrifying. But I did what I could. I contacted them daily, asking for updates, and lending emotional support. Because that was the least I could do, being so far away from home.
Colleges across Texas are holding food and clothing drives for victims of Hurricane Harvey. Food banks and chapters of aid organizations are receiving donations of essential items. Another way, is to donate to the American Red Cross and The Salvation Army by just visiting their websites. Honestly, the smallest contribution will go a long way. Help out Houston. Help the People.
Links for Donating
Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund