Starting as a tropical storm that dissipated over the Yucatan Peninsula, what became Hurricane Harvey was born in the Bay of Campeche. Meandering northwards Harvey made landfall in the Rockport area Friday night as a Category 4 Hurricane with 130mph winds. Following landfall, and as predicted, the storm essentially stalled in the Victoria area dumping rain. Being on the east side, or “dirty side” of the storm, beginning Friday the Stafford area itself recorded over 35″ of rain. While winds in this area where not substantial given the storms degradation after landfall, the rain kept coming. Beginning at 19:00 hours Saturday evening the skies opened and what was regular rain turned into wind driven heavy rain coupled with multiple tornadoes in Fort Bend County. Throughout the event the department was fully-staffed with volunteer, duty crew and full-time personnel staffing every apparatus + 3-dump trucks for high water responses. While dump trucks had been pre-positioned previously for other events, and used on occasion, this time the dump trucks were key players in responses reaching roads and areas not passable to department apparatus. Between Friday, August 25th and Friday, September 1st the department responded to 124-incidents never stopping operations. In conjunction with the excellent support of the city providing 3-prepared meals each day the department never missed a beat. Despite being unsure of their own homes department personnel maintained this tempo for over 144-hours for every imaginable incident type. From structural collapse responses, water rescues, medical calls, structure fires and everything in between the department kept going finally slowing Saturday, September 2nd and returning to normal operations Monday, September 4th.
It is much appreciation I say thank you to the members of the department who kept it all going for the community.