When disaster struck, many Texans discovered Sunday that they had to be their own first responders. The government could help, but only to a point.
Police officers and firefighters rescued many people from floodwaters. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said Sunday that thousands of state and national guardsmen, 20 helicopters, and 60 boats and high-water vehicles had been deployed, and he declared that citizens should know “that the cavalry is coming.”
But the professional first responders could not handle all of the thousands of calls from people endangered by rising waters. The roads were largely impassable. Residents reported calling 911 and getting no answer. The Red Cross command center in Houston became physically isolated amid floodwaters.
So people had to take matters into their own hands. They connected on social media, asking for or offering help. They launched private boats and kayaks. They carried people to higher ground.
“You’re seeing rescues from very expensive, high-end to very low-rent apartments,” said West Houston business owner Jody Goldstein, 51. “It’s hitting people equally.”
The disaster Hurricane Harvey — now a tropical storm — has created is immense in scale, encompassing thousands of square miles of Southeast Texas. It has brought epic flooding that will affect millions of people. Rivers are still rising, the rain still falling.
Полная версия: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/fema-director-says-harvey-is-probably-the-worst-disaster-in-texas-history/2017/08/27/ef01600a-8b3f-11e7-8df5-c2e5cf46c1e2_story.html?deferJs=true&outputType=default-article&utm_term=.32951be9e8d6