The United States’ most powerful storm in 13 years hit Texas on Friday night. Hurricane Harvey landed in the coastal city of Rockport, Texas as a category four storm, battering the region with extreme winds and torrential rain.
Two people are confirmed dead from the hurricane, which saw winds reach 215km/h. Up to 100cm of rainfall has caused severe flooding in multiple areas, resulting in 250 road closures and leaving approximately 230,000 homes without power.
Texas’ Governor Abbott requested a federal disaster declaration for 19 counties, which was authorised by President Trump. “The storm surge, couple with the deluge of rain, could easily lead to billions of dollars of property damage and almost certainly loss of life,” he said as Harvey approached the state. Thousands have been evacuated from homes destroyed by falling trees, power lines and flooding.
While Hurricane Harvey has now been downgraded to tropical storm status, heavy rains continue to batter Houston and surrounding regions.