tv MSNBC Live MSNBC August 29, 2017 8:00am-9:00am PDT
with them. one, two, three, four boats packed with people. looks like an entire family will. there. you can see two little kids sitting with their parents in floaties, wearing rubber floaties like in a pool. >> reporter: we see that over and over again, even children using anything they can to stay afloat. for many of these families it's a desperate situation they've never been in before. and you know, you don't realize how serious this can get in you see that water creeping on your house and realize you can't get out. we were traveling around here in an suv and being very judicious of where we drove, but some of these neighborhoods were telling us that they didn't really have much water, even this morning and then in the past few hours water has been rising so -- we're looking live at that family being loaded off. we'll wait until they get brought over here before i go up and speak to them. you see that little girl -- >> we're going to keep your picture up here.
i have to turn it over to ali velshi who will pick up. we'll keep this up because this is -- this is dramatic. the story that has been playing out again and again in houston as you see this rescue worker, this police officer -- >> see that little girl being brought over in floaties. >> gabe, thank you and please, stick around. >> gabe, stay right where you are. this is very compelling. we're not going anywhere, we're staying with this picture. these are rescues in houston, we're monitoring rescues in how fast houston and nearby richmond. if you're familiar with sugarland, richmond is next to it. these are rescue workers taking children off their parents hands while the parents carry their belongings and get to safety. these are active rescues under way, gabe gutierrez is standing by. he has been nar rating this for us. for those viewers who have just
joined us, tell us what we're looking at. >> reporter: here, ali, we're here on the northwest side of houston just north of i-10 near highway 6. highway 6 is shut down. it's north of the attucks reservoir. a lot of these residents are wondering how the overtopping of that reservoir will affect them. forgive me, we're trying to navigate around high water here -- >> be careful. >> don't want to step in the wrong direction. night cameraman aaron sasen is keeping us all together. i want to try and speak with these family members but being very cognizant of the fact that this is very difficult situation for them. >> we'll stick with you, you do what's necessary. >> reporter: hold on one second here. let me try and find out -- i'll walk over here and see if any of these people want to talk. all ali, would you mind narrating them some of them -- >> these people have just come
out of the boats where they've been rescued by authorities. we're not sure which authorities those are. there are a number of groups in houston who are conducting these resc rescues, there's a coast guard, national garzmen, u.s., urban search and rescue teams. let's listen in to gabe who's having a conversation with one of the families rescue d. >> reporter: oh, my goodness, are you doing okay? we're live on the air so i just don't want to -- i know this is a very difficult time for you. how high did the water get up? >> it was about 1 foot high. >> reporter: water was 1 foot high? >> inside the house. -- is this your daughter here. >> yes, we have three kids. >> reporter: how is she doing? >> now we are good. >> reporter: she's got the floaties on, trying to do anything to stay afloat, right? >> thank you so much. again, you said you a foot or
two in the house. how quickly did it rise? >> it was low but we just we were hopeful that it wasn't going to happen. >> reporter: i'm so glad you are safe. i'll let you get to dry land. thanks for talking to us. we appreciate it. this is something that we've been seeing over and over again. you see the looks on their faces just -- >> relief to have her kids in the car with authorities and safety. that is what we've been seeing, the panic on faces when they tell the stories how the water rose in their houses and didn't know when it would stop. the uncertainty, how are we going to get out. the sewers backed up and water not coming through. >> exactly, as we look here, we see more people being loaded into that national guard vehicle. this is just a nonstop stream. we keep -- all throughout the city -- i don't think people that haven't lived here or from
here, you say this metro area is 6 million people, 2.5 million in the city of houston. these are so many neighborhoods and so many of them are under water and not -- they just didn't expect this, even though this is a city that floods, it never flooded like this. and it's just -- it's a catastrophe for these folks. >> it's 50 feet -- >> reporter: these are -- the neighborhood we're seeing now, keep in mind, this is the second, third day now that in houston we've been seeing these high water rescues. these are new neighborhoods that are under water. >> and part of the result of this, gabe, is that these two reservoirs that are not far from you, the atticks barker, the attucks overtopped its level. this is more water coming in than was plan. they are already releasing lots and lots of water from the reservoir in a controlled manner.
so they knew new areas would flood. now there's yet more flooding that was not expected because the rain was coming down faster than they could get it out of the reservoir. >> reporter: yeah, two reservoirs were constructed after two -- here we go, aaron, if we come back here. look down there, there's more boats coming on. ali, yes, two res voirz constructed after major floods in 1929 and 1930s i believe. they were constructed on the west side of town to store that water so that downtown houston would not flood. the buffalo bayou is the main waterway that stretches through downtown. and those reservoirs unleashed the water into buffalo bay ou. they made the decision to start releasing that water. and increasing water level. basically saying in essence, the rain that is coming down, it is
so much that us releasing this water really isn't going to make that huge of a difference comparatively but the alternative is having these da s s compromised in some ways or having the reservoir, some sort of failure. that's what they are trying to avoid but as we've been saying, we -- we're now at 108 feet, it was the capacity and it's just spilling over on the north side and officials admit they don't know what's going to happen here. >> they don't know -- >> just to explain to our viewers, the idea of releasing that water flow is it with go in the direction of the buffalo bayou while it was going towards downtown houston. it was not ideal but they had a sense if they release it into an existing waterway they estimate. you just interrupt when you have something going on there. >> reporter: no problem. again, i'm trying to go very -- >> go carefully. >> reporter: i'm standing right now in a parking lot. there's a sharp dropoff here i
think. i don't want to go any further. i don't think aaron has a good angle here. however, you see right there, that paddle boat bringing another evacuees -- i don't -- who that is, there's some -- the national guard is here bringing a few folks in. they obviously had high water vehicle so they are assisting. but some of these -- many of these rescues are by private citizens, they are just people going in and helping each other. this boat right here, appears to be a private boat. just somebody that came in here and decided to either help their neighbors or maybe had a friend that lived in this neighborhood and decided this morning, i'm going to go and potentially save some lives this morning, that's something we've again seeing it over and over again here in houston. >> i see there's a national guard vehicle behind you over there. is this a central place where
people who are rescuing people should bring them so they can be then taken out to saver areas or to a shelter? is there some lodger to the place you're in? >> reporter: to tell you the truth, some logic, this does not appear to be a central place. i know they are taking folks to another location, dry location, so many shelters throughout the houston area. when we pulled up basically is when we came live on the air. i don't know the exact place they are taking them to. i'll try to -- if i can get to somebody from the national guard -- again, that's several feet of water right there, rather not go in right now. this is how it works. people are coming here and loaded up either into vehicle or separate vehicles and then taken to a shelter. the convention center in downtown, that's probably the one you've been hearing most about, that one had the capacity at 5,000 cots, they've shattered that, now at more than 9,000 and that was this morning. may have had even more since
then. haven't had a chance to check. yesterday we were at another shelter in fort bend county at the high school and it was bringing in evacuees from a lot of towns. we were in bay city, texas and that one is -- that town is expecting almost 10 feet of water in its downtown. they had a mandatory evacuation where they asked people to go to these buses at 1:00 and if you didn't get ochb those buses, there was one woman we ran into who was in a desperate state and said she had mistaken the time when the buses were coming and didn't know where to go. luckily somebody she knew while we were doing our interview, noticed her and decided to help her out and take her to shelter. you know, people are being taken to to these sheltders in fort bend county, harris county and you see another boat coming in right now -- >> let's talk about what people are carrying with them. that gentleman has a walker in
his hand. somebody else has a suitcase. what are people able to bring with them? what are you most commonly seeing? >> reporter: not a whole lot. they are able to bring maybe some personal mementos but they are happy to get out of their homes. a lot of them in the surrounding neighborhood, they keep telling us they -- if they are leaving, they are leaving not because they know for sure their house is going to flood. they are just doing it as a precaution. now, given what we're seeing right now, it the likelihood of them getting water in the homes, even if it's only an inch or two the likelihood of that is pretty high at this point. some of them are doing, the ones that aren't leaving right away, they may be putting objects on higher ground, but those folks we see, yeah, there's a walker, there's one man with his suitcase right there. you can't carry a whole lotd because these boats only take so
many people. you know the more you bring in is one less person they are able to save. >> you can see where the level of the water is there, the water is up to everybody's else. you can see the national guard truck. the water is almost overtopping the tires. i guess the issue is, even if you have a foot of water in your house, you have seen enough of the stories of people gaining water quickly. you know the attucks reservoir is overtopping and continuing to release water and the rain will come down until thursday afternoon or thursday night. i think people -- they must be fearful they are going to get stuck, if they don't leave their houses -- >> reporter: that's exactly right. and it's better not to chance it. yesterday we were in bay city, texas and it was a situation where yes, we could get around and there was a highway leading into bay city, but the authorities there were saying, the water might crest in the next day or two and we don't know how quickly it is going to come up. as we were leaving there was a
torrential downpour and i mention the rain because we were getting a little bit of rain right now but the west side of houston is supposed to get a little break at least today. right now the east side through the rest of the day is supposed to get hit hardest. but at tht point there's so much water that has already fallen and rivers and creeks are so swollen. then you throw in the attucks reservoir being overtopping, it's just a confluence of factors -- >> i'm going to ask my executive producer to find bill karins if we can to discuss the reservoir. the issue here, as you said, while the east -- we see another boat coming in here. they are paddling, wow. the east side of houston will get rain. you might get a break on the west side but you've got the reservoirs on the west side which are continuing to. >> reporter: that's true -- and i mention this at the top of the coverage, ali but for those just
joining us, we're on the north side of the reservoir. we are in northwest houston north of i-10 near clay road. so we're just north of i-10 and intersection of clay road. as we see another person coming here, with a back pack and she was taken out of her home. we'll see if we can -- she's willing to speak with us but this is northwest part of houston and hold on, let me walk over here. >> yep. hold on one second. let's stand back here and let the workers do their job here. it appears to be -- hi, how are you? where do you need to go? i don't really know. let's hold on. is your parents here?
they are over there. >> reporter: let's get you to dry land over there. >> gabe, you help them out, i'll bring bill karins in for a second. bill, just tell us what's going on with these reservoirs, two massive reservoirs northwest of houston that have at least one of them has overtopped at this point. tell us more about this. >> if you take the graphic source, weather one just quickly. i'll show you where he's located here. you can see i've got the reservoir map up there, and the reservoir is completely full and he's actually located on the north side of the reservoir and if you look at the word addipad west to east on the red banner on the top. this is clay road. he's on the right edge above the i-10 sign. that is where the water is coming out and overtopping the levees, that's the area dealing with the new flooding from our
record breaking levels on the addick reservoir. we watched it get to the 108 feet, now 108.2 feet. even though it is escaping, there's still so much water coming in that it is still rising. now in last couple of minutes it looks like it leveled out. until it stops coming in fast, we're going to watch water rises in places where you're watching the video now on the right-hand si side. where the words buffalo bayou are, that's where the water you're watching right now has to end up. slowly and we don't even know exactly where this water is going to go. gravity will take it and eventually it will end up back in the buffalo bayou in the middle of the screen. then that water has to go through downtown houston. this is what we were afraid would happen. and also, if we go back to the map, the barker reservoir, we lost the gauge on that. they protect the downtown city of houston.
we lost the gauge on that and that was only 4 feet away from overtopping. if it hasn't already, it will shortly and that will overtop and have new areas that are flooded that hadn't been flooded up to this point. we're waiting to hear reports off barker too. getting pictures off the adddicks reservoir. no end in sight. >> bill, stand by. i want to go back to gabe. these boats keep on coming in with more people. gabe, a moment ago you were helping people find out where they needed to go. >> reporter: yeah, unfortunately it was a younger child that we didn't realize was a child at the time and asked him and separated from his parents and got him in touch with police officers right here. that's why we had to go off the air and make sure he's okay. he's on dry land, has a phone and able to contact his parents. just right now talking to the police officers just off camera here. wow and behind me another scene unfolding here with what appears
to be a family with their pets. and again, younger children here with flotation devices. >> we've been getting a lot of questions about pets, shelters are taking pets as far as we know? >> reporter: you know, with -- we have seen a lot of pets. it's a question of -- i don't know if the particular shelter they are going to is taking pets, they you know, there are animal control services where some pets can be dropped off and again, we've been live on the air since we got here so we don't know where they are being taken. let me see if i can perhaps talk to one of these constables that might shed light on where these folks are going. but they seem to be very busy right now with their own work. i'm going to let them work and we're going to show you -- >> give me a sense -- every time i look back to you there's another boat coming in. do you still see boats out there in the distance?
>> reporter: yeah, absolutely. a long line of boats, even when we took that break, they came up so quickly behind me, it was hard to see. they are happening -- it's happening really every couple of seconds that a new boat is coming in, far in the distance you see the range from paddle boats to private boats. subdivision over there is quite large. it could be there are hundreds if not thousands of people waiting for rescues back there and we don't know how long this is going to take and how long it's going to take to unfold. again, as i was saying when we saw that previous rescue, we're here on the northwest side of town. this is the north side of the reservoir. it's not one of those communities that down buffalo bayou south of the river. there are concerns here about what this all means and how quickly this water is going to continue to rise and it's just a lot of surprise here from these
residents on -- they've never seen anything like this before. >> your best case scenario if i can glean what your parents said, the rain let's up where you are and the bayou -- the reservoir has overtopped already and is not overtopping anymore, in which case the water from the reservoirs go to the buffalo bayou and head towards downtown and flood different areas but that the area north where you are doesn't get more flooding. the best case scenario is things don't get -- >> reporter: that's the hope. yeah, that's the hope. excuse me, officer, where are you taking these folks, do you know? >> not sure, i know they have one at the warren ranch high school, cinco ranch high school. >> reporter: do you have any idea how many have been brought out here so far? >> i have no idea. 400 to 500. >> reporter: how long have you bb out here, sir?
>> since 6:00 this morning. 18 hours yesterday. >> reporter: i'll let you go. thank you very much. one of the constables here in harris county, ensuring this goes well but my goodness, ali, behind me, you see more boats coming in, a long stream -- >> this is incredible. this is not letting up any time soon, that constabl say 400 or 500 rescues a guess on his part. another national guardsmen has been here since 7:30 this morning. >> let me ask, folks are coming out of a neighborhood that is flooded, reaching the point where you are where we intersecretary with dry land. that's where vehicles can take them to the shelters that the officer just described as being a few high schools. then we see this boat being detached -- >> reporter: right, this is one of the boat s being brought to help with the rescue effort it seems like. you've seen us stand next to
this bank parking lot. the neighborhood we're talking about is over my shoulder here, that it's far in the distance right there. so then you see people coming out with boats and right here you see this national guard vehicle where those boats are being brought, either loaded on the national guard vehicle or brought to the parking lot i'm standing on a few feet away. it's dry. then they are take taken in that direction to one of the shelters. you heard the constable say some of the high schools, cinco ranch high school by here. the flashing lights you see in the distance, that is actually highway 6 and it is closed off. i believe this is clay road and it's closed off there. no one can get down highway 6 in that direction. the addicks reservoir is that way. so they have -- this water has been rising. as you mentioned though, because we're not getting as much rain today, hopefully it doesn't get
much worse on reservoir but again, this is an unprecedented situation that harris county flood control says they are just trying to figure out what is going to happen here. there is more concern also from those communities on the south side again that are up close next to buffalo bayou -- >> is it still raining where you are? >> reporter: you know, it's drizzling, it had stopped raining earlier. it's just drizzling at this point. nothing like earlier today when we were on the northeast side of town, that was northeast harris county. and there had been water rescues going on overnight and that part was getting pelted with heavy rain throughout the morning and as i understand it is expected to for a good chunk of the day. but right now we're starting to get much drier than we were over the past few days. >> have you noticed in the last i guess the reservoir overtopped probably two or two and a half hours ago is when baill carkari
sense notice it started to overtop. have you noticed the water rising? >> reporter: you know, it's been difficult to tell because we've been moving around so much. just in the last -- since we've been on air it does feel a little higher in the place i'm standing but not any noticeable difference. where we had been seeing it was this neighborhood that we just came from on the other side of highway 6, glenn karn neighborhood. they were under voluntary evacuations and we did see people there debating whether th they were going to leave or not. the water had been rising throughout the morning. some people were gathering belongings and others putting them on higher ground inside their homes. some of them were making plans -- one woman told us she had a vehicle parked on dry land outside of the neighborhood. but for the time being was going to stay in the house because she
didn't think that it was going to flood that much. mind you, that was a neighborhood that never flooded before but we already had water creeping up onto the front entrances -- into the driveways of some of the homes. it was starting to get difficult. it wouldn't have been hard to imagine within a few hours if the water were rising there it would be very difficult to get out if you didn't have an suv. as we look over here we see more and more being brought in. this long line of humanity really being taken out of this subdivision here in northwest houston north of i-10 near clay road where water rescues are under way, ali and we have members here of the texas national guard. we have harris county constabls here -- thank you, sir. and we have private citizens really helping each other and making sure their neighbors are safe. >> gabe, can you ask -- >> reporter: hold on one second, right now i'm hearing a helicopter and it's hard to see
through the trees but that appears to be -- might be a coast guard helicopter there, may be air rescues in this part of the city. that's no surprise from seeing so many of those coast guard helicopters around making those air rescues, desperate situation for so many people. some of them that are trapped in their homes and again, the people we spoken with in this neighborhood said rain just from a few inches in their homes to maybe two or three feet -- >> over your left shoulder -- that is certainly the national guard truck is leaving. do you know where it's headed to. is that taking people away? >> reporter: yeah, we've seen the high water vehicle a couple of them come in and what they do is they are loaded up with folks and only get maybe a couple families in there. then they take them down the street to higher ground and they are unloaded there into other vehicles then they are taken to
some of the surrounding shelters that you heard constable refer to earlier, including one at cinco ranch high school. there are some folks that are taking -- not in the vehicle -- let's -- hold on one second. there are several people -- and i'm trying to get a sense whether those folks had been there before. there were a couple evacuated that have been put in dry land in the parking lot and now being -- now putting them in that suv right there. what i think is a suburban and likely being taken to one of the shelters over there. >> gabe, when you get a second -- >> reporter: let's walk over -- go ahead. let me walk over there and if ali, if you can chat for a little bit so i may approach some of these folks and see if they are willing to share their story. >> i'll ask my control room to bring bill up if he's around. are you there, bill?
>> i'm here. i'm at now desk but trying to watch the shot and see exactly where he is located. i did put a little x on my weather map to show where he's located on the north end of the reservoir where we were told the first flooding would occur. if you want to zoom in here, i went down to google maps and see what it's supposed to look like. and it's a very highly populated area -- >> there's the chase bank. >> you seen the sign he's been at right there. the one thing you'll notice right away, how flat this is. in other words, the levee overtops then that water just spreads out. maybe if it's so flat the water won't be super high but it's going to spread out like a lake all different directions. we can spin around. this is the chase bank and you notice the sign behind him, you can see the chase sign right there and look around. >> that's where he just walked down. >> exactly. that's just where he's walking down. they are taking the people out of this region.
i was going to zoom out a little further and see how populated this area here and how many houses. you get an opinion -- just view of this golf course -- >> hang on for a seconds, the area to the left of highway 6, there seems to be where most of the boats are coming from. >> look at all of the houses and homes and zoom out a little bit more. this is the reservoir. it looks like there's a little spillway or something here. this is probably -- this may be something that feeds into the reservoir. this is probably backed up and so you imagine if that's backed up, and the reservoir is overtopping, look how many homes we have and as far as i know, all of these homes that dot this map were not under a mandatory evacuation, not that i heard of. maybe voluntary. >> we weren't expecting the reservoir to end up there, overtop. >> wasn't until overnight last night it became very apparent the reservoir was going to overtop and back up and that the north end -- it was about 4:00 or 5:00 in the morning. even after that, didn't hear from the harris county flood
control people that this was -- this imminent. there's a million things going on in the region and they are doing the best job they can. unchartered territory, we said it a million times. look at the houses that are in here. if there's water up to the doors of the first floor of all of these houses, i mean, that's got to be a couple thousand people if they are in their homes, they may have to go in there and get them. >> just again to your -- on your google map there. just point our viewers to the intersection that gabe has been based out and where that chase bank is. you'll see gabe with the chase bank sign behind him. he's base beiically in the park lot of the chase bank -- >> there's the main road. >> this is highway 6. it looks like there's a big chase bank located right here and he's up here towards this intersection. it appears to be greenway and -- karen way i think it's called and this is where he's standing and located and you see the
chase bank. this is where they are pulling the boats out of it. they must be coming out of this intersection -- this road here that leads back to all of those homes. they are just using that as a guide to get back here to all of these people that go back in this development. >> we're seeing boats coming out with people and new boats coming in, we just saw one being unhixed a ski boat and sending them in to rescue people. we're not even clear, bill, there's national guard at the intersection, that gabe is at, but it seems to be everybody helping everybody out, people taking their own boats in and trying to find people who need a rescue. >> we have to stress, this is new flooding. this wasn't flooded yesterday. it wasn't flooded in the big -- first flood saturday night into sunday. these are people who thought they were completely safe and saw the sufferings of all of their neighbors then they were watching the reservoir they bought their houses near go higher and higher and higher. then they opened up the flood
gates about 24 hours ago and probably hoping, okay that reservoir will start coming down. the water going in was still faster than even with the gates full open could handle. so you know, they were forced -- there's nothing they could do. the flood control measures were taken but the water coming in is too fast -- >> to your point, there are people who gabe has spoken to been evacuated, only a foot of water but they didn't think they were getting any water in their house. at the point you get to a foot and watching tv or heard from relatives and friends that people are trapped in their houses and backed up and the national guard and coast guard know they are there and can't actually get to them, they've told them if you don't have an emergency -- >> that engine is pretty far down, they didn't have to prop that up hardly at all. that's at least 2, 21/2 feet and i showed you how far that is and how many houses in the middle there. >> those boats could be coming and going the next 24 hours to
get people out. there's the chase sign bill showed us which is central to the intersection that gabe is at. it has been almost an hour, bill, we have just been seeing boats coming in, boats going out to get people. the beauty is that the national guard and those in the national guardsmen in the orange helmets there, they are coordinating this effort but this is houstonians in large part helping their fell loi people. >> that's what they are going to need. this area to the north of the reservoir, i haven't heard of a lot of bad flooding from the north there so i think it should be pretty accessible. there's no major rivers there, the brazos is further south. it should be accessible for anyone who wants to go to this area to help to come in from the north. i will also stress these are new people that have been obviously watching the coverage and stuff, we're going to get closer and closer this afternoon to dark. it looks like this will be a mass evacuation in this area and take through the night tonight.
they are telling people to hang white sheets out of your houses and put them up on the roof so you can't see the house numbers, it's very difficult for these people to locate these boats with the house numbers when it gets dark. if you need rescuing, put the white flag out front. >> that may be what's helping people but this is an emergency. this is a part of houston of those millions of people in harris county who did not expect to need these water rescues. i want everybody to stay with us. gabe gutierrez is speaking to people on the ground at this intersection at northwest houston where they are rescuing people. we'll stay with this story. this is what you saw a little bit earlier when i came on at 11:00 a.m. eastern. this is what you saw, those little kids with the floaties being rescued. we're on msnbc live covering this. we'll be right back. stay with us, please. it's time for the biggest sale of the year
northwest houston where we have just seen an endless stream of people coming in from a residential area on boats. they seem to be private citizens helping these people evacuate. we've been away for a couple of minutes, what's happened? >> reporter: more people have been brought in right there, being taken off that boat, swing around that direction, you see another boat being loaded in the national guard vehicle. i'm going to walk over here and see if these folks do want to talk. we've been speaking with some of them that say they only have two or three feet of water in their homes but they just felt terrified and they needed to get out quickly and never thought that this would happen in their neighborhood. one constable that we spoke with, harris county constable a few minutes ago said he estimates at least 400 or 500 people have been evacuated from this one neighborhood alone. hey, guys. hold on one second here.
these are people being evacua d evacuated, bringing their pets. we want to give them some distance, this is a very difficult time for them. this woman is taking her pet and being loaded into these -- some of these vehicles right here. see that woman with two of her pets, very emotional right now. >> wow. >> and it's just an incredible to see. are you doing okay? ma'am, are you okay? are you doing okay? you're good. are you doing, okay ma'am? >> reporter: thank you. >> this is just heartbreaking to watch. >> it really -- it's heartbreaking and heart warming at the same moment to see the lengths to which houstonians are going. what we're not shows as much of is people unhitching boats and
sending them in while you were figuring out what was going on, we brought bill karins in and looked at the road from which the boats are coming in. that is a massive neighborhood in there next to the reservoir to the north of it. it is huge. there looked to be many hundreds of houses in there, bill is concerned this could go on for many, many hours considering this was not a neighborhood that was expected to flood and perhaps may have been contributed to by the overspilling of the addicks reservoir. >> that's exactly right. you see those families being brought in over here and put in the suvs and taken to those shelters nearby, including c cincho ranch high school. you see another boat -- two boats coming in the distance. this is a neighborhood that is quite large, suburban houston, population here is just overwhelming and any one of
these subdivisions, and they have hundreds of homes and thousands of people. and if this is just getting under way or at least the water rescues here according to one of the constabls started at 6:00 this morning. this has the potential to go on for many more hours. we don't know how many people will end up being evacuated from here. can't be stressed enough, ali, that this is a developing crisis. we just do not know when this is going to wrap up. we don't have any firm numbers on how many people total have been evacuated in the city of houston. we know it's more than 3,000 by the police department. but ali, how many people have we seen here that aren't part of law enforcement that are private citizens and we're talking about the harris county constabl's office and sheriff's department and coast guard, national guard, the so many agencies are working on this then you bring in the private citizens helping their neighbors.
we spoke with one man, didn't want to be on camera but said he had just gotten there, felt compelled to help. he brought several kayaks and several of his buddies were helping the rescue effort. we hope to speak with some of those good samaritans shortly. >> we would love that. >> reporter: too really tell the story of how people feel compelled to help. they don't even live in this neighborhood. several miles -- >> beauty of it. gabe, here's what we're going to do. i'm going to keep your shot up while you go and talk to some folks. i'm going to have a conversation with another gentleman who is stuck in his house. i do want to remind everybody, however, the area south of you, south and east of the reservoir going into the buffalo bayou have been flooding for some time. this is new flooding. i'll keep your shot up while you're in it but talk to joe flores who you can see on the top right, he's in cyprus texas, due north.
the northwestern corner of houston. he joins us now by skype. for a moment of levity, joe, we don't have much levity in the story but you i believe own a flower shop that is called mamamia which gave me a situation that's not giving me smiles right now. are you stuck in your house? >> yeah, i am actually stuck up here in my house. the water has receded out of the house but my street is flooded to where you can't drive out of it. they have been rescuing people here. the army, there's been helicopters going over us. you know, it's just -- it's a pretty bad deal here. >> you've got communication obviously because we're talking to you. have you got running water, water that you bought? have you got sewage -- are the toilets flushing? >> i have a lot of bottled water. the water is running. and since the water is backed out of my house it's actually --
the toilets have starting flushing, they were backing up last night. but now it's gone down enough to where i can use it. and you can see my power is still on. we've been grateful just to have that but it is very damp, dirty and muggy in here. >> is that a dog in your shot there? a little kitty, all right. tell me the water has receded but it's too high to drive. can you hang on one second? i've got gabe gutierrez there got something here. who we got there. >> reporter: hey, there, ali, this is jason. >> correct. >> reporter: where are you from and why are you here? >> we're from the northwest side of houston and here to help out people. >> reporter: you don't even live in the neighborhood. why do you feel compelled to come out this morning? >> we have a big group of people and saw devastation around our subdivision last night and we're high and dry thank goodness and
got a big people on facebook to get together and help folks less fortunate. >> reporter: got on social media and decided why not. >> right. >> reporter: how many -- what did you bring over here? >> i brought kayaks, tubes, we live in a boating community so there's a lot of ski tubes and stuff like that. we brought all of that and we're trying to do the best we can. >> reporter: ever done something like this before? >> never, never done anything like this before. this is probably the worst thing i've seen. >> reporter: how long have you lived in the houston area? >> i've lived here since ninth grade, 20 years or so, 25 years. >> reporter: we see more bringing in boats to evacuate either loved ones or just complete strangers it's something we've been seeing over and over again. what do you think it says about houstonians and people in this part of texas, how great is it to see this type of response? >> i've never seen anything like this. people are launching boats in here and i can't believe they are risking their property and stuff like that to help people out. it shows how true houstonians
are. >> reporter: how long do you expect to be out here? >> probably most of the day until they tell us we're needed elsewhere. we sent a another crew further south. we're trying to make the biggest bang for the buck here. >> reporter: thank you very much. thank ug for your time and good work you're doing out here. i'll send it back to you. again, as these rescues are not letting up, we're seeing this long line of people, more and more being loaded into this national guard vehicle. >> i'll keep your shot up but mayor turner has started speaking. let's listen in. >> we have identified a couple of other mega shelters locations i'm not going to announce it right at this time but that announcement will be forthcoming. i want them to get set up first and then i'll be meeting also with county judge sometime around 12:30 where we'll make a joint announcement with respect to an additional shelter. but there are additional shelters that are going to be
set up. the reality is is that not only are we providing shelter for houstonians but also providing shelters for people who are coming outside of the city of houston who have been directly impacted by the storm. we're not turning anyone away. but it does mean that we need to expand our capabilities and our capacity in that regard, we've certainly made the official request to fema. we need additional assistance and we've asked them to provide supplies and cots, food, for an additional 10,000 individuals. and hopefully those supplies will get here as soon as possible. at the latest we hope no later than sometime tomorrow. if before then, it certainly is needed even before then. but we're asking for an additional 10,000. quite frankly, in many ways the city of houston has county
serving almost as a regional sort of hub. not only taking care of people from the city of houston but also accommodating people who are coming in from other areas. so additional announcement on the sherlts will be forthcoming in the next few hours. we just need them to set up. yesterday the focus was on rescue. today we'll continue to be on rescue. that's critical and that's highly -- that's important and let me first call on chief aceveda to give you an update on rescues and other related matters as relates to law enforcement. >> thank you, mayor. good morning. this overnight the houston police department continued to operate throughout the city, conducting search and rescue, our rescues of the last count was over 3500 folks rescued. again, it's really important for
the community to know we're not just in search rescue mod, we're in law enforcement and public safety mode. last night we actually had some arrests made of a crew that was robbing members of our community. community. officers heard about it, they deployed in heavy rain, found them, they went in pursuit and all of those suspects were taken into custody. here's what i would like to say to people that would take advantage of individuals, this is the state of texas. and we're a welcoming city but we're not going to tolerate people victimizing, especially committing armed robberies in our community, we're going to catch you and i promise you this, we're going to push hard, i talked to the attorney, to seek the fullest, two things, the fullest prosecution possible available for any crime committed, and secondly, we're going to urge juries and judges to give you the most toughest sentence that you can possibly get. so word to the wise, don't come
to houston, because you're going to be caught, and i guarantee you when you take advantage, including our own criminal element here, you take advantage of people and prey on them, under these circumstances, that's despicable behavior, and we're all going to push hard to make sure you don't see the sunlight anytime soon. so we have got armed robbers last night, middle of the night. and we also got more looters, a handful of looters at a game stop last night. and the chief has been here, helped catch three of them. it is all hands on deck. we're fully operational. we have resources coming throughout the state of texas from other major cities. they are already in the awar. we're beginning to task them, we're beginning to give them specific missions that will be doing two things, first, they will be conducting security at some of our locations where we
have evacuees. and secondly there will be relieving some of our officers in the near future. we will not be reducing our posture, officers continue to sleep in the stations, they will be continuing to sleep in these stations throughout the response phase. we're still in the response phase and we probably will not be moving towards recovery for a matter of a couple more days. our officers will not be going home. we had 160 of our families that we know so far that have been impacted. and i can't speak enough about not just the police officers and the firefighters, but all of our city employees that this mayor leads that no one has left their post, they're out doing their job and so we're fully functional, we're still trying to get to folks and like we said yesterday, don't give up on us, seek the higher ground, we will get to you. we have assets at every passing hour, more boats are getting into the water, every passing hour, more high water rescue vehicles have come into the theater and, please know, one of
the delays has been this is a catastrophic event that i don't think we have seen when the weather channel starts creating a new color to -- for rainfall, they have never used that color before. there is a reason they used it. and so for all the monday morning quarterbacking out there, you can't talk about hindsight because there is no hindsight in terms of an event that has never occurred. and so with that, just know that these relief convoys have been stuck because of all of the inaccessible roads but we are starting to get them all in and we're in good shape moving forward. >> thanks, chief. i certainly want to thank the cities, mayor price from ft. worth, example, sending down 100 police officers, talked with her yesterday, i want to thank the city of ft. worth. dallas, mayor rawlins, they set up individuals coming from the surrounding areas, galveston and
others, i want to thank them. mayor alan in austin, also setting up to receive people from the region. and so i want to acknowledge him. and the mayor of san antonio has also extended his hand. so we want to thank all of our partners, mayors, and other cities throughout the area and throughout the country for their support. let me also now call on fire chief sam pena for that report. >> thank you, mayor. good morning, everybody. so as of midnight tonight, the houston fire department had responded to over a thousand calls for service. over 400 of those have been water rescues, water related incidents. we have -- we augmented our deployment teams, our boat teams with members from the texas task force one, as well as the fema usar teams. we keep -- as resources arrive
on scene, we deploy them to one of eight area commands. firefighters, as well as police officers have been working tirelessly since this event began three days ago. we have some crews that are going under third day in a row. so we have implemented certain things to ensure that our firefighters are receiving the appropriate rest and nourishment and directed staff to do is go ahead and establish operational periods, and there will be some periods where we have less firefighters in the game so to speak das they are placed out of service to rest for a few hours. brought back in and we're rotating crews that way. it is difficult for us to bring in 800 individuals to replace the people that are on duty because in a lot of areas we can't get in and out of the fire stations. so we can't deploy them, you know, to where we need them with their equipment and that's
logistically, that's an issue we're having to deal with. but based on the staff recommendation, we have decided to manage what -- the resources we have on scene and as we're able to bring in fresh crews from off duty, we're doing so, but our operational profile remains the same. we are in a rescue phase at this point. we'll continue to do so until we have ensured that we have serviced every call for rescue that is coming into the 911 center. thank you. >> and on rescues and that is, kingwood would be a focal point for today. we will continue to work on all of the areas, but kingwood will be a focal point because there is more water that is coming into the area, so in terms of water, water rescues, in the kingwood area, we are focusing on the area called the enclave, which is an area with primarily
one story house, you know, houses in that area, and so water rescues are taking place at the enclave. barretten in kingwood, royal shores in kingwood, closest to lake houston, and forest gardens. the water rescues are out there. i know the fire department and the police department are sending additional assets in that area to the people in kingwood. and they are being taken to creekwood middle school. which is a red cross lilly pad to get them out of that area for now. the next 24 hours i think for the kingwood area is going to be very important to see how the water continues to flow. but we are watching that area very carefully and we're working very closely with council member dave martin in the kingwood area. water rescues taking place at
kingwood at the enclave, barretten, royal shores and forest gardens. they have been taken to creekwood middle school as a holding place for right now. we're watching that area. all of the areas within the city of houston we're focusing on. whether it is this area, whether it is in the inner city itself, spring branch area, down in the clear lake and south side, all the areas, a lot of our resources are all over the city. and so certainly want to thank again the first responders, police and fire, for being out there 24, 24/7. not just on the daytime, but some of the most hazardous conditions happen to be at night. and we're telling our houstonians to stay off the street. i'm going to continue to ask all houstonians to stay off the streets. but i want to underscore this, i'm asking all houstonians to stay off the streets. but our first responders are on the streets and they are on the
street at night in very treacherous situations. and so cannot say enough for them that are working, working around the clock. i want to give you an update on the northeast water plant, since that's very important to the city and to areas, communities that are supplied clean water by that plant. jeff, want to come in and give us an update? >> crews continue working at the plant. the water plant is operating. houston's water is safe and we don't expect any change in that situation. >> i appreciate public works support on that, on that effort. a lot of conversation in reference to the reservoirs. we indicated yesterday they were raising their release level from where it was yesterday, 5,000 cubic feet per second, up to
8,000, gradually. i think they have reached that point. but i want to -- with steve if you'll come and bring us up to date on that. >> thank you, mayor. good morning. this morning we were advised by the core of engineers that the addicts dam, the ponding levels in the dam have exceeded the elevation at the tail, which is north end between clay road and tanner. that uncontrolled release rate will continue through probably september 20th to some level degree of level, peaking out at august 31st, in about two days. we're in close contact with the corps of engineers and harris county flood control district to get a better understanding of where that overflow is going to meander through, what neighborhoods. we anticipate it will be confined within the areas just west of beltway