With rivers still rising, emergency workers continued to rescue soaked and frightened people in southeast Texas who have lost nearly all they own, and officials counseled patience on Tuesday, warning that conditions will not improve soon.
The slow-moving, record-shattering tropical storm Harvey pummeled the Houston region for a sixth straight day and began to batter southwest Louisiana. With hundreds of thousands of people under evacuation orders, shelters filled to bursting with people who craved some news about the safety of their loved ones and the state of their homes.
For now, the city’s focus “will continue to be on rescue,” and not on damage assessment — much less recovery — Mayor Sylvester Turner said at a news conference.
Here’s the latest:
• The National Weather Service said Tuesday that Harvey has set a record for total rainfall from a single tropical cyclone in the continental United States. Two weather stations in Texas reported total rainfall over 48 inches.
• Local officials have reported 19 confirmed and suspected flood-related deaths. Officials in Houston confirmed Tuesday that Sgt. Steve Perez, 60, died while driving to duty on Sunday.
• The Houston Police Department has rescued more than 3,500 people from flooding, Chief Art Acevedo said. The city fire chief, Samuel Peña, said his department had performed more than 400 rescues. The Harris County Sheriff’s Office did not have an updated figure on Tuesday, but said it was considerably higher than the roughly 2,200 rescues it reported on Monday.