USA – Flash Floods Prompt Emergency Rescues and Evacuations in Texas and Kansas

Update 08 May 2019: Further heavy rain caused flash flooding in parts of northern, central and western Texas. One person died in flood waters from Shoal Creek on the western edge of downtown Austin, Texas on Wednesday 08 May.

Storms and heavy rain have again caused flash flooding in parts of the USA. This is the second spate of flash flooding in the last few days.

Emergency workers carried out dozens of high water rescues in areas around Houston, Texas, after flooding from 07 May, 2019. Storms have also brought heavy rain and flash flooding to parts of Kansas, where some homes have been evacuated.


Some areas of Houston recorded almost 10 inches (254 mm) of rain in 24 hours to early 08 May, 2019. National Weather Service (NWS) Houston said rainfall rates in areas over Fort Bend, Brazoria and Galveston counties were around 2 to 3 inches per hour.

Firefighters and police worked to evacuate some homes and rescue people from vehicles on impassable roads, in particular in areas around Kingwood in northeast Houston, and Sugar Land, situated to the southwest of the city in Fort Bend County.

Fort Bend County declared a local state of disaster for flash flooding and potential Brazos River flooding. The City of Sugar Land said via Social Media, “We’ve over 7 inches of rain during the past four hours. All major roadways impassable. Seek high ground and avoid driving if possible. More rain is expected”

The Houston Fire Department reported they had received about 250 calls for high water rescues in the Kingwood and had conducted approximately 40 rescues.


There were also reports of flooding in the state of Kansas, along with hail and strong winds. NWS Wichita said, “Very heavy rain caused a lot of flooding last night, with numerous impacts still occurring this morning. We are encouraging everyone to plan ahead for a less-than-normal commute in some spots this morning. Normal routes may be impassable.”

Early on 08 May, homes evacuated in Peabody due to quickly rising water. Earlier, around 15 people from several homes had to be evacuated in parts of Chanute, Kansas, on 06 May.

The NWS issued a “Flash Flood Emergency” for Augusta, Mulvane, Douglass and Rose Hill. Rose Hill Fire Department reported that 5 inches of rain fell in 2 hours during the evening of 07 May. Flooding in the area closed roads. At last one person had to be rescued from the flood water.

Days of Severe Weather

Severe weather has dogged wide areas of the USA over the last few days. A series of severe storms swept through the South and Midwest from 30 April, 2019, bringing tornadoes, strong winds, hail, heavy rain and flooding.

Two fatalities were reported in separate incidents in Oklahoma and 3 people died in severe weather-related incidents in Missouri. Several tornadoes were reported in the states of Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Arkansas and Kansas. Flash flooding was reported in areas from Texas to Michigan from 30 April.

A state of emergency was declared in parts of Illinois, Oklahoma and Michigan, and extended in parts of Iowa as a result of flooding.

The heavy rain also increased levels of the Illinois, Missouri, and Mississippi Rivers. Parts of the Mississippi River reached record levels at Davenport on 02 May.

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