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29 Aug 2017

Houston reels under 'unprecedented' flooding from Tropical Storm Harvey

Texas is expected to face worsening "catastrophic" flooding in coming days in the wake of the category four Hurricane Harvey, which was downgraded to a tropical storm.

The storm has caused widespread devastation, leaving at least nine people dead.

Over 3,000 people have been evacuated in Houston, America's fourth-largest city.

The storm has impacted other parts of Texas and neighboring Louisiana.

In context

'Catastrophic' flooding from Hurricane Harvey expected to worsen
Trump: "There's never been anything like it"

Trump speaks

Trump: "There's never been anything like it"

"They're saying it's the biggest. It's a historic amount of water, there's never been anything like it," US President Donald Trump said about Tropical Storm Harvey.

Trump offered tribute to rescue teams and the "spirit" of Texans. He said he's going to work with Congress for a huge aid package for victims.

"It's going to be a very expensive situation," he said.

Around 500,000 people will need assistance

Around half a million disaster victims are expected to seek assistance in Texas while 30,000 evacuees need to be housed in emergency shelters. A "mega shelter" will be set up at a convention centre in Dallas, Texas, to house 5,000 evacuees.

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Entire Houston suburbs under-water, roads turn into rivers

Houston has experienced 30-inches of rain, turning roads into rivers. Forecasters believe this is expected to double in the coming week.

Entire suburbs are inundated and roads have turned into rivers.

"Catastrophic and life-threatening flooding will continue across south-eastern Texas," the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has activated 12,000 members of the Texas National Guard to help in search-and-rescue operations.

2 Indian students rescued from hurricane-struck lake in Texas

Critical condition

2 Indian students rescued from hurricane-struck lake in Texas

Two Indian students, identified as Shalini, and Nikhil Bhatia, are in critical condition after they nearly drowned while swimming in Hurricane-hit Lake Bryan, Texas.

Both students, in their early-20s, were rescued and immediately hospitalized.

The Indian Consul General in Houston is monitoring their situation and is assisting their families.

It remains unclear why the two Texas A&M University students went swimming during a storm.

Economic loss

Analysts believe storm will cost $40bn economic losses

Analysts believe the storm would cause economic losses in excess of $40 billion, including direct losses of $20 billion.

The storm has hit the Gulf of Mexico, the heart of the US' oil industry which houses several major oil refineries and offshore drilling platforms, that have shut down.

Unlike oil companies, which insure their assets from storm-related damage, small businesses and families don't.

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