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Louisiana, Mississippi Areas Under Flood Watch As Texas Floods Spread

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Louisiana, Mississippi Areas Under Flood Watch As Texas Floods Spread

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An alligator crosses Sawmill Road near Brazos Bend State Park in flood waters in Fort Bend County after heavy rainfall caused the Brazos River to surge to its highest level causing flooding outside Houston, Texas, in this picture taken June 1, 2016, courtesy of the Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office. Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office/Handout via REUTERS

By Alex Dobuzinskis

Torrential rains in Texas which caused flooding that killed 16 people this week have spread to southern Louisiana, leaving parts of that state and Mississippi under a flash flood watch through Sunday morning, according to the National Weather Service.

Heavy rains could strike the Florida panhandle early next week, but not as intensely as in Texas, Daniel Petersen, a meteorologist at the Weather Prediction Center in Maryland, said in a phone interview on Saturday.

Small streams in southern Louisiana have overflowed their banks, causing localized flooding, he added.

At least 16 people have died in Texas in the past week as some rivers swelled to levels not seen in more than 100 years, forcing thousands of people to evacuate their homes in low-lying areas.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has declared a state of disaster in more than 30 counties, the Texas Department of Public Safety said in a statement on Saturday. In Bastrop County, southwest of the state capital of Austin, flooding damaged nearly 300 homes, it added.

Heavy rainfall was forecast to continue on Saturday along the Texas coast and potentially trigger more flooding there, state and federal officials said.

National Weather Service hydrologist Gregory Waller said in a phone interview on Saturday that the Brazos River was expected to crest this weekend near Rosharon, a community south of Houston that is home to more than 1,500 people.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice began evacuating on Friday about 1,700 inmates at its Ramsey Unit in Rosharon, due to flooding along the Brazos.

Flooding struck Richmond, upriver from Rosharon, earlier this week when the Brazos overflowed its banks and according to state officials damaged nearly 80 homes.

Forecasters said that on Sunday the threat of flash floods in Texas would decrease as rains become less intense.

“We think that tomorrow, the lower rain totals are going to give them a chance to dry out,” Petersen said.

Even after the rains stop, parts of the state are likely to have a challenging path to recovery.

Gov. Abbott on Friday toured flooded areas south of Houston and told reporters some neighborhoods were “literally islands, completely surrounded by water.”

Nine soldiers died on Thursday when their troop carrier overturned during a training exercise at the U.S. Army base of Food Hood in the central part of the state, in a region where torrential rains caused flash flooding.

 

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Richard Chang)

Photo: An alligator crosses Sawmill Road near Brazos Bend State Park in flood waters in Fort Bend County after heavy rainfall caused the Brazos River to surge to its highest level causing flooding outside Houston, Texas, in this picture taken June 1, 2016, courtesy of the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office.  Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office/Handout via REUTERS

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5 Comments

  1. johninPCFL June 5, 2016

    Good news for Abbott. He can cancel all of the water use restrictions placed throughout the state over the last decade.
    After all, if a snowball displayed in the Senate overturns a decade of steadily rising temperatures, surely a flood leaving “neighborhoods were “literally islands, completely surrounded by water.”” surely disproves the notion of a drought. (at least by conservative standards)

    Reply
  2. Siegfried Heydrich June 5, 2016

    So, would anyone care to hazard a guess as just what it is that God is punishing Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi for?

    Reply
    1. plc97477 June 6, 2016

      Must be racism because if it was stupidity florida would be getting it also.

      1. Siegfried Heydrich June 6, 2016

        They got hammered pretty good up in the Panhandle (southern Alabama), but the weather witch we have on the island where I live was on duty, so they got next to nothing. It’s really amusing to be in Europe and get on-line to see exactly what the weather radar looks like back home in real time, right down to street level . . .

  3. Guadalupe2136 June 6, 2016

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