Houston residents have started to see rain bands from Hurricane Harvey move onshore today. Unfortunately, this is but a taste of what awaits the city—and the entire Texas coast from south of Corpus Christi through the Beaumont area, as well as inland counties—for several days to come. I’d love nothing more than to write a post expressing some optimism about the rainfall forecast ahead, but as of now it looks really quite grim. So let’s get to it.
Harvey has intensified this afternoon, reaching 120-mph sustained winds and Category 3 status. It should come ashore the central Texas coast near Port Aransas on Saturday morning, by or before sunrise. The storm is going pack a major wallop in terms of both wind and storm surge. Residents in the area should have completed their preparations and evacuated, because conditions are starting to deteriorate. It is a life-threatening situation for people who have remained behind in low-lying areas between Corpus Christi and Matagorda.
Beyond Harvey’s landfall the situation remains a mess. An absolute mess. Last night we talked about three different scenarios for Harvey’s movement, post-landfall. And honestly, all three of them remain in play. The most important thing to understand is that our confidence in Harvey’s post-landfall track remains very low. Unfortunately the most likely scenario now is that Harvey isn’t going anywhere, any time soon. Therefore, we can say with high confidence that Harvey will produce a [googles a synonym for ‘sh–load’] large amount of rainfall over Texas.
Expect floods. Lots of flooding.
Let’s start with the GFS model to explain what I mean. Here’s the ensemble plot of Harvey’s remnant low (perhaps still a tropical storm, perhaps not, doesn’t really matter) location for Thursday morning. Remember this is fully five days after landfall.
Yeah, that’s bad. If this is more or less correct, it means Harvey has remained in Texas, within 100 or 200 miles of the Gulf of Mexico, for five days hoovering up moisture and heat from the bath-like Gulf and dumping it on the eastern half of Texas. Five days. I think Noah just maxed out his Home Depot credit card.
And it’s not just the GFS model. One of NOAA’s best hurricane-only models, the HWRF, basically takes Harvey on a similar, five-day rainmaking tour of central and south Texas, keeping the storm in place with no steering currents.
Finally, there’s the European model, which during its last two runs had pulled Harvey out into the Gulf and had it caught up in a trough over the Midwestern United States. At least this pulled it out of the region by Wednesday, or so. Now the European seems to be playing the “shelter in place” game with Harvey’s remnants, too. Its latest run (12z) keeps Harvey more or less onshore (not entirely) and has the storm wandering around Corpus Christi, Victoria, and the western Houston area through … Friday night.
I’ve been saying it is meaningless to try and predict which areas of Texas will get the greatest amount of rainfall during the next several days, and that remains true given that there is such low confidence in Harvey’s evolution once it moves onshore. But I feel confident that a lot of people, perhaps most of the area between Corpus Christi and Beaumont, have a good chance of seeing a lot of rain. Like widespread 10 to 25 inches of rain over the next five or six days. Or maybe more. That means you, Pearland. Take a bow, Katy. You’re on deck too, Baytown. Have some water, League City. Looking at you up there in The Woodlands, too.
- A very serious flooding situation is coming.
- A very serious flooding situation is coming.
- A very serious flooding situation is coming.
- For some reason, the Governor of Texas said Friday afternoon that Houstonians should evacuate from the rain. Normally that decision is handled by local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston—ride it out.
Matt will be posting the next update at around 7pm CT today. Hopefully he will be able to come up with some brighter outlooks where I have failed.
Posted at 3:15pm CT on Friday by Eric
188 thoughts on “After looking at the latest forecast models, we feel pretty bad”
There will be heavy rainfall, but are we able to anticipate wind conditions? Will IAH and HOU be shutting down?
Eric, if it rains 25 inches around houston over 5 days would Houston not be able to handle that as it is “only” 5 inches per day? Why would there be so much flooding? I thought allison was so bad because it dumped so much rain in such a short period.
Because it won’t all fall evenly over 5 days and it’s the flash flooding that gets us. Our main roads were meant to wick water into our bayous and eventually down to the ocean. But once the bayous are full and the ocean is surging there’s no where for it to go and it won’t drain or soak in fast enough for the amount of water being dumped all at once. As it stands. Day one. We have barely seen drizzle. The problem is getting 15 inches of rain all at once on Sunday or Monday.
Serious condition… great information…and…I just love your style of writing. You add just the right touch of humor to emphasize and yet not minimize the situation!
Sounds like a very serious flooding situation.
True God please let everyone be safe
God bless you all please stay safe xxx.
I hope and pray that this storm doesn’t live up to the hype. The last thing the people of that area need is to get flooded out, homes and businesses damaged. I’m Jemere Braxton in North Carolina and I will be praying for you all who are in the path of this storm. GOD bless you all.
Both airports are already shut down.
Not the news I wanted to hear but thanks for telling it to us straight.
I left last night to San Antonio and just arrived in Austin. Should I try further north to D/FW or just stay put?
Austin is OK, I think. DFW absolutely safe, of course.
they said that years ago and dallas drivers were killed while in rush hour traffic.
I think it’s pretty sad that you can post flippant comments about the way you misled people to think that this was going to be no big deal while our families who were relying on your prediction are now at risk and stuck in the outlying areas of Houston for days! Just saying oops, my bad, doesn’t exactly do it! Very sad.
I don’t feel like that’s at all what he was saying. You’re still not in danger. You might not have power, but you’re not going to die. Relax.
There is going to be severe flooding and it will keep people from getting out. They could have gotten out days ago. Common sense. Watch the news.
Exactly. We have to remember that our freeways can only handle so much. People who live on the coast need to evacuate to save their lives. People with medical conditions who rely on power need to evacuate to save their lives. Most of us in the Houston area had plenty of time to prepare well and will just be hot and bored for a few days. You don’t evacuate because you might lose power and water. You evacuate because you might die. The responsible thing to do is prep well and shelter in place so that the people who need to leave can.
Wait. What? This site has never misled anyone! They’ve done a fantastic job of being honest and upfront as to the difficulty in tracking the storm. Even still in this post saying, we still don’t know exactly what it’s going to do once it hits land. You don’t get the hype here, you get honest predictions. It’s been said repeatedly that it will be a big deal, trying to nail down where was the challenge. And it just goes to show that no matter how far technology and science come, you can’t 100% accurately predict the weather!
I think it’s pretty sad that you ever thought he misled people. Never once did he say it was going to be no big deal. He has tried to avoid committing to a Houston scenario while also emphasizing the gravity of the rain situation. Very sad.
I was just going by his big heading at the top saying they felt bad about it. And then the comments below it saying:
A very serious flooding situation is coming.
A very serious flooding situation is coming.
A very serious flooding situation is coming.
We have family there and are concerned. I hope it works out and that he is right for everyone’s sake. Thank you.
Lisa, don’t misplace blame. Weather is highly unpredictable and no meteorologist would ever advise something that would put citizens at risk. Nobody says “oops, my bad.” We are responsible for our own decisions in the face of natural disasters. If you feel the need to evacuate, then please, evacuate! Save your family, pets, and loved ones! Be an autonomous human being and make your own best judgment. But do not disparage or criticize the very people who are attempting to provide us for the best advice for safety, property life and SURVIVAL. There’s a reason you visited spacecityweather.com and that’s because you came for accurate weather reports. HEED THEM.
As a Houstonian, you should probably at least be prepared for some threat
Again, don’t misplace blame. There is no blame to be placed. Hurricanes are haphazard. All we can do is deal with it.
Thanks Eric for the amazing weather reporting.
Wow! Very well spoken! I love to see everyone sharing their opinions and being blunt, yet respectful.
But again, Well Written Opinion 🙌🏾 Kuddos ‼️
Yep, that’s what happened. You were deliberately misled. Do you know how weather predictions work? Do you think it’s an exact thing? Your understanding of weather work is what’s sad.
He’s still saying the same thing he’s been saying all along…
I don’t that’s quite fair to Eric or Matt. They have been quite clear in all previous posts that: 1) it is incredibly difficult to predict where and when and how much rain we will get; 2) the potential for catastrophic flooding has always been there.
And yeah, relatively speaking, this is no big deal. Let me be clear: This is a dangerous event for Houston. It will cause tremendous damage. Lives will be lost…
… and it will be nothing compared to what the people in the direct path of this storm will experience.
Please don’t give Lisa the attention she craves. Save your energy for flood victims on Monday.
😂😂😂🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣😂😂😂😂 In not picking sides, but this comment made me laugh 😂 so freaggin’ hard !
You are not a native Texan are you??
You poor little victim you. If only you had something – like – the ability to make your own decisions. So sad. So sad.
Have you never experience wrong forecasts before? If he could control the storm, I ‘m sure he would have picked it up and moved it already. Are you telling us you have never been wrong before?
Where did you read “oops, my bad” Lisa? I confess that I missed that in the post.
It’s frightening, this weather, and so very unpredictable. A cursory reading of history tells us that truth. But to blame the forecasters seems odd to me, frankly. But it is what it is. And only God and the weather gods know the final result, right?
I wish your family and all Texas families the very best in the next five days or so.
Many, many thanks for the esteemed weathermen of this blog.
I think you misunderstood the heading- they ‘feel bad’ about the intensity of storm and the fact that people will suffer. They feel bad that they don’t have more positive news to report.
Amen !!! While at work today, I streamed the city and state officials “ride it out ” on national Television. And I kept saying to myself
” They are going to regret these words ”
“They are making a fool of themselves. ”
Not only that, the video footage of how they were treating the reporters at the FEMA Camps, was frightening.
I think he was saying he feels for everyone that will be impacted by the weather.
Can’t blame the reporter. No human can predict the weather, even with modern technology. My hometown is on the Mississippi gulf coast, and Katrina brought utter devastation to most of my family. If you live in the path of hurricanes, you must be vigilant. I do not hold any person responsible for the nightmare we endured in 2005, and I was thankful for the previous post, as that I’m now in the Pacific Northwest, and it gave me some reassurance that my family would be safe in this storm.
Lots of traffic headed to Dallas I heard
Praying for all who remain behind and safe travels to all who evacuated. Here, the Dfw had some pretty good rain as well, within the last few hours. Though I’m not certain in any way it’s connected to Harvey.
For safety’s sake, I recommend D/FW since both Houston airports are closed. This storm is mean and nasty and the farther North you can travel, the better off you (and everyone else) will be. I have seen reports that 60 inches (5 feet) of rain is yet to fall in the Houston area between now and Friday.
Is landfall turning more north than originally predicted? How would that effect things here in Houston
Thanks for your great reporting, Eric. Do you happen to have any updates on the Cypress area?
What about the Cypress area? It flooded pretty bad during the tax day flood. I keep hearing it’s going to be worse than that. I have 3 young babies that won’t be able to protect themselves. Should we head north to Dallas? My husband’s company is based out of De Soto.
I know my comment is late. But I’ll be praying for you and your babies. I live here in the Dallas area and I have 4 little girls. If your gut is telling you to leave , forget all other opinions and you and the girls head this way. It’s better to be safe. And feel secure.
We’ll get lots of rain, but do you have any sense of how badly airport ops will be impacted? Will IAH/HOU be shut down?
I suspect they will be fairly badly impacted, if this comes to pass.
When do you think that starts? Saturday morning? Sunday morning? Thank you so much for your insights.
My friend was supposed to fly out of HOU tonight, but her flight, along with others, has been canceled.
Southwest is having everyone reschedule their flights from this weekend. I have rescheduled my flight twice from Saturday, not it’s Tuesday, and i might have to reschedule again.
People you have to face the truth,, it will heart but Thad the way Eric thanks for your information. i life in Alief . How will affect us. Sorry about my Spanglish.
Any idea of when Houston is going to REALLY get hit? Should we expect flooding tonight or is the outlook more towards isolated bands of rain until tomorrow?
Hey Eric, just to be clear:
“For some reason, the Governor of Texas said Friday afternoon that Houstonians should evacuate from the rain. Normally that decision is handled by local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston.”
Your advice to to ride it out, correct?
Was just about to ask the same question. The last sentence “that” doesn’t have a clear antecedent.
Yes, Eric. That sentence is very ambiguous. I can’t tell which advice you endorse.
Yes that was confusing too. Wasn’t sure if he really meant evacuate from the rain but the way it’s worded sounds like ‘stay put’.
I want an answer to this also! The scenario described lends itself to go; however, it seems that Eric Burger is saying he would ride out the awful situation he described. It is not clear.
Guys, ya’ll need to make the best decision for you and your family. These guys are telling you that there will be tremendous amounts of rain in the area, with that rain comes tornadoes, lightning, and other ancillary weather events. To be clear.. it is probably too damn late to leave the area which is why they recommend riding it out, because you do not want to be caught in this..
The time to head for Dallas was yesterday or this morning.
It looks like he updated the wording since your post. It now says:
“For some reason, the Governor of Texas said Friday afternoon that Houstonians should evacuate from the rain. Normally that decision is handled by local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston—ride it out.”
His comment has been corected and widely published. Listen to local officials, like the Harris County OHSEM.
I got from this story that if you are not medically dependent on electricity you should ride out the storm. By staying behind sheltering in place you are allowing those people whose lives depend on getting out to get out in a timely manner without overloading the roadways. You maybe without electricity, bored, or hot but if you are not dependent on electricity for medical reasons, you will survive. Granted you have stored water and food.
thanks Eric. please take care of yourself.
For those of us in friendswood should we stay or go? We live by clear brook high school in heritage park and were told its never flooded.
That is not true. In the late 70s part of Heritage Park flooded (I lived there although not the flooded area). Friendswood flooded big time too.
It may be our specific area did not have flooding and that the surrounding areas flooded causing us to be stuck…? They were saying they haven’t had any issues and have lived here over 40+ years
Yep, 1978. I lived in Imperial estates at the time, I was 2.
The parking lot at Brook floods badly. I’ve seen Hope Village flood at its intersection with Tall ships, but I haven’t seen the actual homes flood before. I’ve taught at Clear Brook for five years. I really hope you stay safe over there.
The closer you are to the creek, the more likely you will see some water. You should be ok where your at.
2351 starts going under right after Blackhawk/ Frankie Carter as you go into town.
Thank you to those who responded kindly. We are praying and prepared! Praying for everyone’s safety.
I was raised in Friendswood and had the creek in our backyard and also was to,d that it will not flood but we did during a thunderstorm Claudette in 1979 (100 year storm). Do not believe it is not possible! Make preparations. Good luck!
Hey Eric. You say nearly everyone in Houston should evacuate…I live in the med center and I’m 4 stories up. Am I still in “life-threatening” danger. We are hundreds of miles from Corpus and the storm is no longer projecting the eastwardly movement that you mentioned in your post earlier, which actually seems like BETTER news for Houstonians…seems to late to evacuate now anyway. Thoughts?
If you didn’t leave yesterday, you need to stay put.
No he doesn’t say that.
I read it as he recommended that we should ride it out, as local officials suggest, not that we should evacuate.
He did not say evacuate. He said stay put.
Ashton, you’re not going to drown on the 4th floor, but you might have problems with electricity going out, plumbing problems, elevators not working, refrigerator kaput, etc. Good luck to you, and stay dry!
I’m sorry the wording at the end confused me. Your recommendation was to ride it out or evacuate? I’m up in tomball but was considering leaving if expected to deal with really bad flooding.
I’m confused also
His recommendation, as well as all Houston area local officials, is to ride it out. Getting on the roads at this point will be dangerous and will only impede the evacuation of people who need it. Stay put. Losing power sucks but you’ll live.
I am still hoping for leftover pop tarts, but am now hunkered down.
Pardon my reading comprehension, but do you mean your advice is to listen to the Governor of Texas and evacuate, or to listen to the local officials and ride it out?
Did you just tell us to leave town?
No. He did not say leave town. He recommends riding out the storm. Gov. Abott ignorantly said Houston should evacuate. Local officials know best and there have been no evacuation orders at this time.
Hey Eric, I live in the medical center. You say everyone should evacuate if they live in Houston, but if the new model tells us the storm is going to post up around Corpus and not shift eastward like the earlier models predicted, doesn’t that spell better news for Houstonians? If I’m 4 stories up right of 288, how “life-threatening” is the storm?
I’d like to know this also. Son lives in 4th floor apartment off N. Wilcrest. Told him to have supplies to be stuck for several days.
Eric did NOT say to evacuate… read carefully…. “Normally that decision is handled by local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston.” In other words… all Houston officials are saying NO evacuations in the city areas, and that is what you should pay attention to’
People, people, people — Eric said he agreed with Houston officials who said DO NOT EVACUTE, ride out the storm. The old hurricane adage holds: Run from the water (as in storm surge, not rain), hide from the wind.
The problem is Houston is on the so-called dirty side of the storm. If indeed, the center of Harvey stays in the 100-200 mile range Eric discussed, that means the bulk of the moisture flowing off the gulf will fall *east* & *north* of the storm center.
Meaning Houston would see almost continous bands of heavy rain for the next 5 days.
That’s why the flooding risk is son high & dangerous. You might be safe, physically, on the fourth floor, but you almost certainly would not be able to leave for many days until the the water recedes.
I admit I haven’t lived there in a while, but I would only stay in the Medical Center area if you can stay put for a week, regardless of the conditions (no electricity, running water, etc). It floods there when you spit.
“Your advice as well for almost everyone in Houston ” refers to whose advice???
The Governor’s or the local officials??
So now what?
Mayor Turner tweeted this at 2:30pm today:
“Please think twice before trying to leave Houston en masse. No evacuation orders have been issued for the city.”
How can I find information about whether my area has flooded in the past? I live in Missouri City… googling just obtained some very confusing ancient flood maps. I’ve only lived here for a few months, so I don’t have any history to go by…
Thanks for the hype-free forecasting!
Thanks for asking -I have been trying to find that out as well.
I’m seeing lists with “so-and-so North of Hwy Bla Bla”but I’m not so familiar w Houston. Prefer a map. Thanks.
Another place to look is https://www.harriscountyfws.org. Find the nearest sensors and look at the history part of the sensor page; that will show you the heights that have been recorded there in the past.
Looks like most of Missouri City is behind levees: http://fbcgis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/OnePane/basicviewer/index.html?appid=cfe8b1a5660f4c5ca07f48aec0690591
The dark grey area is safe(r), the thatched and blue areas are likely to flood.
Eric, your last comment, your advise would be to ride it out, or to get out of town
I really didn’t understand the last paragraph of this post. Should Houston evacuate? Pearland, League City, The Woodlands are getting drenched also? I’m in Cypress, should expect the 15-20 inches also… Sorry just a little confusing
So I’ve cancelled my flight back this weekend and was planning to fly in to Hobby Wednesday night instead. After reading this latest post, I’m unsure if that’s even a good idea anymore… will travel back to Houston be safe at all next week? Appreciate the work.
I’m stuck in this situation as well. Flight back to hou Sunday is almost certainly going to be cancelled but when should things clear up enough for the planes to start running again. Wyoming is lovely this time of year but I’m ready to come home.
My 8 year old nephew just named the EU track for Harvey ” the Three Stooges pattern”. 😀
As a resident of Orange County, I appreciate your insight without all the drama. The television crews are sounding like a broken record. It’s tiring.
In your last takeaway, are you saying that you recommend riding it out as recommended by local officials? It’s not clear if you are agreeing or disagreeing with the governor.
“….local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston….”
His advice is to ride out the storm. Not evacuate.
My reading of Eric’s commentary on the Abbott’s statement is that he agrees with local officials to stay put.
Folks – his statement was not saying everyone should evacuate. He stated – “Normally that decision is handled by local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston.”
Pretty sure Eric is agreeing with the local officials’ advice to stay and ride it out (in a sensible, safety-first sort of a way). So no evacuation orders from him, or from official channels. Mayor of Houston tweeted to recommend staying put too, I think.
I’m wondering specifically about Little Cypress Creek and how Cypress will be impacted, since it didn’t fair too well during the tax day flood. I know they’ve done work in it since then, but I still worry about my daughter and grand children. They came very close to getting water in their house and many of their neighbors did.
Do projections for the heaviest rain for Houston still hold for late Saturday night going into Sunday? What might this mean for the Southside Place/Meyerland/Bellaire areas and their associated freeways (South Loop and West Loop)? Would Saturday morning be OK to drive through this area (specifically the Loop and feeder streets)?
That area is quite low lying and will likely have signficant flooding (All of Bellaire/Meyerland is within the 100yr flood plain, including the belt/feeder): http://www.harriscountyfemt.org/
I was planning to change my flight to Wednesday night (into Hobby), but I’m not sure about that anymore after reading this latest post. Will travel back to Houston be possible before next weekend?
Stay home, and look again at bullet point 4 in Eric’s post. Eric clearly said that his advice to his audience is the same as Houston officials advice: shelter in place . The Governor is interfering with the normal practice of local officials making recommendations, and the Governors advice for Houstonians to evacuate was wrong. (And dumb, if you remember the hopeless mess on Texas highways caused by attempted evacuation from Ike. Wake up, Gov!)
Is our stupid governor right about anything? No. Ignore the buffoon and pay attention to local experts.
Eric – same confusion at the end – stay or leave (in Katy)
he’s saying stay.
Given the wording, I believe that Eric is skeptical about the governor’s recommendation (as am I), and Houstonians like us would be better off staying put at this point.
I believe Eric is saying listen to the local officials and make preparations to wait it out, not leave.
Pretty sure Eric is saying that asking Houstonians to evacuate due to rain does not make sens
An evacuation of Houston at this point would be more disastrous than in times past. San Antonio and Austin are in danger of flooding and won’t be much help. Anyone who’s in place will be safer to move to as high a ground as possible and hope for the best.
This right here! The wording was a little odd, but Eric said he agreed with most of us staying put.
So now we’ll see how all of Pearland’s newer drainage projects perform. Every time I saw bonds for drainage improvement on the ballot, I’ve voted yes. Fingers crossed that those votes pay off now.
I think he said, “Blessed are the cheesemakers”.
For those with reading comprehension-related questions, Eric wrote, “local officials [. . .] have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston.” In other words, no need to evacuate Houston. Or Tomball. Or Katy.
Not sure what all the confusion is. It seems pretty clear to me Eric was telling Houston residents to listen to the weather experts and to stay put and ride out the storm, NOT to listen to the governor.
IH 45 construction right now makes travel frustrating on a clear day. En masse evacuation will result in people getting off the highway and they will end up on roads prone to flooding in the Trinity and San Jacinto River Bottoms. Abbott doesn’t seem to be aware of geography south of Austin.
Everyone: Eric Berger responded n Facebook…He sides with the local officials. I know he is very busy, and thought I would pass along that info…
First off, Eric, you are the BEST. Appreciate your efforts and insight always presented in a reasonable manner. It seems like a lot of people are confused about whether you agree with the Governor saying Houstonians should evacuate, or local officials saying to ride it out. Could you please clarify. Also, if I live right on the water (Clear Lake/South Shore Harbor Marina) about 4 miles by water from the outlet entering Galveston Bay, would you say evacuating would be the best call? Many thanks!
I am not sure how even came across this post… facebook maybe… ? Anyhow, who the heck is Eric and why does everyone care so much about what Eric thinks we should all do???
Can you explain why you recommend staying in place if it is likely to be such terrible flooding and flooding is the greatest cause of harm in hurricanes?
The most dangerous part of hurricanes is flooding from STORM SURGE…which is a threat to coastal areas such as Galveston Island…but not a concern for most of Houston. We’re likely to see flooding from the copious amounts of rain heading our way, which in itself can be hazardous, but not anywhere near as deadly as storm surge flooding.
He fixed it !He fixed it ! ” Normally that decision is handled by local officials, who have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston—ride it out.”
So glad I found this website. Thank you for your clear and embellishment free information!
For all of you confused about Eric’s last piece of recommendation he pretty clearly recommends to stay put and ride out the storm in Houston. After addressing Abbott’s (irresponsible) advice Eric writes,
“[Local officials] have advised residents to ride out the storm. That would be my advice as well for almost everyone in Houston—ride it out.”
Great reporting and really helpful. Question: do you have any insight on the capacity of Addicks and Bear Creek reservoirs to handle the rainfall of this storm? My impression was that major portions of West Houston (North of Westheimer) were above most flood possibilities unless these retention features overtop. It seemed that was the biggest risk to areas along Buffalo Bayou during the Memorial Day storm and Allison when they had been preceded by lots of rain.
Thanks for your insight!
On August 17, there was a controlled release from Addicks reservoir, cancelling recreational activities on Buffalo Bayou. Was that done anticipating this storm?
Lols to Governor Abbot suggesting we run from the rain. There is nowhere in Texas to run. Seabrook here, sandbags down and wine in stock.
Thoughts on the Conroe/Montgomery area? Should we brace for significant impact, or are we far enough north to see winds reduced and less rainfall?
For the record, the synonym for ‘sh–load’ is ‘f-kton’.
My daughter and son in law both work at NASA, are they safe in clear lake/Nassau Bay Area? She is 7mths high risk pregnantcy and can’t leave town. She can go as far as Sealy/woodlands area.
They work for NASA and can’t decide what they should do?
The Gov’s comments are a bit curious, if not irresponsible. Last time Houston was told to evacuate it created an absolute mess on the roadways. There are evacuation zones… I think they come up as far as 610, and then a few scattered in the city. Other than that, ride it out, people.
God we live in Westbury/Meyerland and I’m sick with worry about our house flooding AGAIN. We did install 8 retaining ponds and a badass sump-pump in the backyard that’s kept water from pooling in the back, but the front… yeah, street is always flooded. And we’re not even in the flood plain for Brays.
Just want to give you major kudos for your efforts! That’s a lot of great work on your property.
Just heard of your site yesterday. Really appreciate the candid, no-hype approach. I’ve saved the link to my favorites already, and am sharing with others.
Be safe out there.
Eric. I think it’s clear what you said. People like to over think things. We are all in this together. All lives matter. So listen up. Gather what you can. Enjoy the company you have or are with. And make some memories people. Meet your neighbors. Get to know each other. Talk to your families and children. These are times to play games together. Tell funny jokes. Make the best of what’s to come. Neither Eric nor the governor can have a crystal ball and tell you the perfect story in the end. There are some people who are going to have it worse than others. Prayer for one another. And make memories. This doesn’t have to be so difficult. You’re here so stay.
Perhaps you can help us by saying who should evacuate and who is safe to ride it out in Houston? I realize however that it’s totally unclear. But we are definitely running scared now.
If you are not currently on the beach, stay home.
They work for NASA and can’t decide what they should do?
OMG! How many times must these questions be answered? Count off by twos, ones ride it out, twos evacuate. Really. You are grown ups! Make your own decisions!
Sorry new to area. Is Lufkin going to impacted?
The Local Government Officials – Mayor Turner and Judge Hunker Down both commented in a news conference that the Governor made a mistake telling people in Houston to evacuate.
Houston area people, stay home. Read a book, play board games, meet your neighbors!
Even though the news is grim, I greatly appreciate your sense of humor (referring to Noah). You are the best!
Pasadena Texas I have a flight out of Hobby Monday 5pm Delta and I cant get them to tell me if Hobby will close. Then of course might have to swim there! Eric thx this is all so messed up! But ur reporting has help alot!! Now I just need the airlines to respond!
For all the people asking, “Will my area flood?” the answer is yes. It’s Houston. Wherever you are is going to flood, sooner or later.
🙂 Well, I just finished my Ark — It now sits on my front lawn. But a “higher power” objected when I proposed leaving the fire ants and mosquitoes off the “passenger list.” 🙂
Well, you need two of each, but maybe you could “accidentally” make them both males.
Even when delivering dire news, you still find the humor. Thank you.
Based on questions and concerns from non-local friends & family, apparently it’s easier for the nat’l news outlets to say that Houston is in the storm’s bull’s eye rather than Corpus – where’s that? – so most are convinced I’m facing Impending Doom. I’ve been directing people here left and right so that’s helped tamp down the hysteria.
Are the floods still projected for late Saturday through Monday or can we expect flooding before then ?
What should we expect in the Heights? How robust is drainage there? We are new to the area and haven’t experienced a hurricane.
Hmmm… developers lay down three story townhomes a hand shake away each direction from a bunch of other three story townhomes in a section of town with narrow streets and in parts now almost no grass….. and leave drainage to the city……
I don’t think it has flooded recently, but I don’t think it has been tested the way Meyerland has, either. I wish I could be more encouraging, but that’s my experience with that part of town.
Your best bet is to talk to your neighbours, Nick. Go outside, knock on a few doors. Houston’s flooding problems can be vary street to street.
The streets flood in heavy rain now after all the new development. You should be fine if you’re on pier and beam. You just may not be able to go anywhere.
This is a very good comment. Most folks aren’t going to get flooded out of their homes, but with all the street flooding people won’t be able to get around at all for 2-3 days at least, it looks like. Start adding possible power outages into the mix and it makes for a lot of miserable Houstonians for a few days, but it’s not the end of the world for most of us. Those poor folks down around Corpus, however, are gonna take one Hell of a beating. Worse than Ike gave Bolivar kind of beating. Prayers for them.
Lived in the Heights for 3 years of semi annual Houston flooding. You should be fine as long as you’re not near the bayou or TC Jester. Going anywhere is a completely different matter as all the areas around it tend to flood.
Most of the Heights is well out of the 100 year flood plain: http://www.harriscountyfemt.org/
This thread is funnier than reddit.
The latest European model run seems to be showing another scenario – call it The Austin / Sugar Land Split.
Our weather service at work seems to have incorporated this nito their last forecast, having Harvey as a remnant low by Wednesday noon.
Do you have a link?
Not great news, but I appreciate the humor in delivering the bad news.
I think it’s pretty sad that you flippantly make light of the fact that you inaccurately misled thousands of people and now our families are stuck in the outlying areas of Houston and unable to get out! Saying “Oops, my bad” is not only unprofessional but shows no sense of responsibility for the role you have played in this event. Very sad.
What in the world are you talking about? Have you read their posts leading up to today? Everything predicting this said it would be bad.
No one is responsible for Lisa except Lisa. We’re all adults here. Weather science is not math where you plug in X and get X+Y every single time. There is a huge amount of uncertainty.
“Then you have the Wayne Dolcelfino types that have to stand on the seawall fighting the wind to stand up while in the background you see some little old lady out walking her dog or a teenager having a good time in the rain.”
I kid you not, this comment alone relieved a ton of stress and anxiety for me. Thanks for the great laugh.
What do you think the impact will be in San Antonio? My daughter is residing at UTSA and this makes me nervous for her…
Will it be safe to drive into the med center in Houston Saturday at 6 -7am?
Likely not recommended. The med center is a low lying area. You may want to check and see if the bus/trains are running. If they aren’t I wouldn’t even try it.
The key really is how far and fast Harvey moves once he’s on shore.
Back in 1979, I had just moved to Clear Lake (working at NASA/JSC on the shuttle flight simulators) when Tropical Storm — not Hurricane, but Tropical Storm — Claudette made landfall coming right up I-45 from Galveston. She was supposed to drop 6″ to 8″ of rain on her way inland. Instead, she stalled pretty much right over SE Houston for 24 hours. Alvin set the still-existing record for 24 hours of rain in the continental US: 42 inches. The rest of us in the area got about the same amount.
I was staying in what was then the Nassau Bay Resort Motor Inn, directly across from the NASA main gate, on the 3rd or 4th floor. I saw literal — and I mean literal — sheets of water fall from the sky. Never seen anything like it before or since.
On the other hand, a year later, Hurricane Allen — Cat 5 — was coming right toward Houston. My wife and I decided to evacuate to Austin. Once we made it to I-10 West, we decided to go to San Diego instead (our home town) for a vacation. Good thing. Allen veered sharply west at the last minute, made landfall at Brownville, and went right through Austin, doing over $!00 million in damage due to tornadoes it spawned there.
Prayers are with all those in Harvey’s path. ..bruce..
I’m a Meyerland homeowner with an unelevated house and we left for college station this morning. Curious why your advice is to ride it out? To avoid overcrowded freeways? Has exit traffic been a problem this time? I haven’t seen it reported. With a prediction this strong I just feel like it’s gotta be better to not be in Houston if you’ve made it out or can make it out securely, no?
My best friend and her family are in Austin, rain bands already hitting, with the storm predicted to stall this is a very dangerous storm, let’s all pray for Texas.♥️
Most recent models look better for houston and worse for austin. Feel any better about flooding situation here?
Do you have a link showing that Houston is looking better than Austin now?
I flew to VA to visit my hubby. I live in SE Texas. The weather in our area was supposed to be Wind and Heavy Rains. I flew to see him this time. I parked my vehicle at a safe parking lot close to the airport in Houston. I would like to know if Greens Road flood? I need to know if my car will be damaged from flood waters?
Eric is on “Houston Matters” right now, station 8.6.
There is a huge problem at times like this with most reporting. It is generally written around the worst case scenario as that is the “news” part of it for most journalists. This site is much more detailed and explains the range of possibilities as best they can be known. In other words. the professionalism here exceeds what you could find almost anywhere else. Having lives in Texas all my life I can say that the hysteria around these events is almost bad as their material impact. Thanks for the work you do.
Praying for our friends still living in Houston – this looks like a lot of rain for y’all.
We moved to Waco a few years ago. For old time’s sake, we have to ask – should Waco evacuate?
How does it look for Clear Creek. We live across the street from the creek and only flooded in ’79.
Potentially pretty bad, if the storm evolves like we think it will.
I live in Mayerland. Moved 5 yrs ago. Should I evacuate? Two adults, 2 teenagers and a dog..
We are not on the bayou front. My first hurricane…
For those who have not experienced flooding in Houston yet, the best advice is to stay put.
Would you rather float around your neighborhood in your canoe or a rescue boat, or be stuck in gridlock on the freeway when it floods? During Hurricane Rita, it took over 8 hours to move just a few miles. Cars ran out of gas, it was hot, people were getting sick, and some died trying to evacuate. It didn’t flood then. This could be different.
You can live with a flooded house. Being in a car during a flood would be a disaster.
I have flood insurance. Any experience on how that works?
I’ve the confidence that HOU got well prepared and the Army Corp also has designed the Addicks Barker Reservoirs for 100 years flooding level( as I studied)….Harvey looks like hit the level of 20 year+ level. Pray for the safety and best results to everyone got affected by Harvey.
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