HOUSTON– A slow-moving storm system combined with rich Gulf moisture produced historic flash flooding near Houston, Texas Monday morning.
Record rainfall totals between 10 and 20 inches fell in less than six hours just in western Harris County, just northwest of downtown Houston.
Flash flood emergencies, the highest level of flood alert, were issued by the National Weather Service. Jeff Linder, a meteorologist with the Harris County Flood Control District, reported that many waterways in the area had risen beyond their 500-year flood levels. That simply means the level of floodwater occurring has only a .2-percent chance of occurring in a given year.
Over five dozen high water rescues had been performed as of 7 a.m. Monday, according to KTRK.
— Jennifer Reyna (@JenniferReynaTX) April 18, 2016
— Jeff Lindner (@JeffLindner1) April 18, 2016
Harris County emergency officials tweeted out a stern warning to residents to stay away from flooded areas.
— Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management (@ReadyHarris) April 18, 2016
All inbound flights to George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston were held at their origin for several hours Monday morning due to the flash flood emergency, KTRK reported.
Dozens of schools were closed Monday due to significant flooding making many heavily-traveled roads impassable. Houston’s metro public transportation system also suspended bus and rail services.
— Steve Campion (@SteveABC13) April 18, 2016
City of Houston advises all residents to AVOID TRAVEL today. Many Roadways are impassible. #houwx
— Houston OEM (@HoustonOEM) April 18, 2016