Hurricane Harvey was a storm like no other. In August 2017, more than 26 inches of rain were unleashed in just 24 hours—almost 50 inches by the storm’s conclusion—submerging Beaumont, Port Arthur, and other Texas Gulf Coast cities. Beaumont mayor Becky Ames described the devastation as “nothing I’ve ever seen before.” Flooding in Beaumont spurred the loss of the city’s primary and secondary water supplies. The storm damaged over 200,000 homes, three quarters of which did not have flood insurance. The flooding and winds also led to the release of 5.5 million pounds of pollution – caused by the damage to dozens of nearby petrochemical plants on the coast. More than 80 lives were lost.
Read more: The University of Texas at Austin