Hurricane Harvey Wreaks More Havoc on Texas Travel

Aug 26, 2017

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Friday night around 10pm Central Time, Hurricane Harvey made landfall near Rockport, Texas, packing top sustained winds of 130 mph. This makes it the strongest hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Hurricane Charlie in 2004 — a storm that caused over $15 billion in damage. For reference, the devastating Hurricane Katrina made landfall in 2005 with 125 mph top winds.

However, unlike with most hurricanes which sweep through an area before moving onward, Hurricane Harvey’s story is far from over. The storm is predicted to stall out over South Texas, dumping truly biblical amounts of rain. A wide swath of Texas is predicted to get over 20 inches of rain, with some parts in the warning area likely receiving over 40 inches. The latest National Hurricane Center statement doesn’t mince words: “Catastrophic and life-threatening flooding is expected across the middle and upper Texas coast.”

Hurricane Harvey rainfall estimates

For comparison, two years ago, Austin airport received an influx of 14 inches of rain in one day, including six inches in one hour. It was bad enough to cause substantial damage to the airport’s radar systems, shutting down the airport for hours and limiting traffic in and out of the airport for months. With many areas of Texas facing double this amount of rain, similar damage could be inflicted over the next few days.

In addition to water falling from the sky, the coast north of the center of the eye will continue to be at risk from rising waters. As the circulation continues to churn, more of the Gulf waters will continue to be funneled into these beaches. Forecasts predict up to 12 feet of storm surge in areas just north of the circulation (Port Aransas to Port O’Connor). One video appeared Saturday morning showing how the winds are pushing water ashore:

Due to the flooding and continued wind damage, it’s safe to say that travel through the area will continue to be affected for at least a few days.

Cancellations continue to pile up at Houston airports. Already today, Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport has chalked up 69 cancellation for departing flights and 68 more cancellations on inbound flights — accounting for about 12% of flights. The airport had to briefly suspend incoming flights Saturday morning due to winds, but is operational again at 10:30 local time. Houston’s Hobby airport has seen 102 cancellations at mid-morning Saturday, about 35% of scheduled flights:

Corpus Christi and Valley International Airport outside Harlingen are faring much worse, with more than two thirds of scheduled flights cancelled already for Saturday.

The flights that aren’t cancelled are having to battle winds and strong rain, forcing go-arounds and diversions:

If you’re stuck in the area without a place to stay, remember that Airbnb is waiving booking fees. And hosts are stepping up to help. As of this writing, 124 hosts are offering completely-free housing options for Hurricane Harvey evacuees:

airbnb free

If you’re in the area, make sure that you are cautious of the flooding. Move to higher ground if necessary. And remember to never drive through flooded roads. Heed the Texas saying “Turn around, don’t drown.”

And whatever you do, leave the gators alone:

Featured image by Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.