Entire neighborhoods were left underwater after rapid rainfall swept through Houston overnight Wednesday, July 4, 2018, washing away roads and stranding motorists. Local media described the event as 'extreme.' The police said they had 167 vehicles removed and towed. No injuries or fatalities were reported.
The National Weather meteorologist Molly Merrifield said Thursday that the official July 4, 2018 record, as measured at Bush Intercontinental Airport, was 106.4 mm (4.19 inches). However, other areas saw as much as 203.2 mm (8 inches), with at least 18 locations in Harris County recording more than 177.8 mm (7 inches) of rain in 24 hours.
During the same period, Galveston recorded 56.3 mm (2.22 inches), breaking the previous record of 54.3 mm (2.14 inches) set in 1942. Hobby recorded 152.4 mm (6 inches), breaking the previous record of 77.2 mm (3.04 inches) set in 1942 and Intercontinental 106.4 mm (4.19 inches), breaking the previous record of 88.6 mm (3.49 inches) set in 1942.
While local media described the event as 'extreme,' NWS said that the flooding was typical for Houston and didn't come close to the devastating floods caused by Hurricane "Harvey" in 2017.
Several bayous, including the White Oak Bayou, broke their banks and floods were reported in 17 different location across the city by 13:00 local time. Houston Police Department said they had 167 vehicles removed and towed.
Rainfall rates on the decline, expect another inch or so over most areas around city that have already picked up 2 to 4 inches, locally 6 plus (west side). Many roadways on west and south side of city are still experiencing flooding in light rain. Stay where at through early PM. pic.twitter.com/hqlOxOvb38— NWS Houston (@NWSHouston) July 4, 2018
The city canceled its holiday concert and festival due to the rain, but not its fireworks display.
Featured image: High water rescue in Houston, TX on July 4, 2018. Credit: Houston Police Department