Historical: Harvey Two Years Later

Historical: Harvey Two Years Later

By this time, many of you have probably heard many comparisons about Imelda and Harvey, as many people are deciding now is a relevant time to revisit those wounds. We know you’ve heard, talked about, and read a lot already about Harvey’s destruction and aftermath, but we thought now would be an appropriate time to lean in and retell a few impactful pieces of truly historical information, especially following the recent storms and tornadoes out of North Texas in recent days.

“Hurricane Harvey was the most significant rainfall event in U.S. history, both in scope and peak rainfall amounts.”

Source: 2018 US Geological Survey
Harvey viewed from the International Space Station on Aug. 28, 2017 at 1:27 p.m. CDT as a Tropical Storm. (Photo by Astronaut Randy Bresnik. Credits: NASA 2017)

“Not only were rainfall totals exceptional during Hurricane Harvey, the area affected was also larger than previous events.”

Source: 2018 US Geological Survey
Interstate 10 submerged by floodwaters of Harvey on Sept. 1, 2017, Vidor, Texas.
(Photo by Brett Coomer. Credits: Houston Chronicle 2017)

Some sources have claimed that Hurricane Harvey actually destroyed more vehicles than any single event in American history. The Insurance Council of Texas reports an industry-wide figure of at least 250,000 cars and just short of $4 billion paid out. If you throw in the uninsured fleet, which is sadly an enormous number, this has to be the single largest incident of vehicular destruction in America.

Fast Forward to 2019

And then we had Imelda enter the scene. The risk it posed was already being downplayed as just an area of disturbed weather up until literally the last moments. When most people thought the risk the weather posed was over, and over the span of a mere 15-45 minutes, things changed drastically for the worst — and what resulted, we all saw. Right outside the coast, it changed to tropical depression and again to tropical storm before meandering over Southeast Texas and drenching our communities. Many of the same areas bombarded by Harvey were again traumatized by Imelda.

Imelda’s history as shown by The Weather Channel company. (Source: TWC 2019)

In retrospect, what’s the damage?

  • Ten weather events have already inflicted at least $1 billion in damage each in 2019, NOAA said.
  • This is the fifth year in a row with at least 10 such costly weather disasters in the US.
  • Since 1980, 254 such weather disasters have inflicted $1.7 trillion in damage.

To read more, visit the article here.

The facts, the data, the statistics, the details – for Harvey, they’re in and finished. But for Imelda and the other weather disasters still to come, there is still a lot of research to be done before we get all the information.

Of course it’s not all doom and gloom, as we’ve seen from the outpouring of community support and the numerous photos floating around social media proving the resilience and commitment to empathy for others in these and similar situations.

From the ‘Cajun Navy‘ or similar individuals rescuing stranded folks from their rooftops to local businesses opening their doors to provide shelter to those in need. From Texans showing up en masse to help save pets in flooded animal shelters to rescuing over 50 horses that weren’t evacuated in time.


We are Resilient. And we are #TexasStrong.

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