Harvey’s fatality count climbed dramatically on Wednesday according to local officials, with at least 38 deaths confirmed and suspected to be caused by the tropical storm as of writing. Twenty-eight of the deaths were in Harris County, the massively flooded area that encompasses Houston. The number has been continuously rising throughout the afternoon.
Those deceased include 41-year-old Colette Sulcer, who was forced to abandon her car with her 3-year-old daughter Tuesday afternoon when they ran into heavy rain and winds on a service road. First responders found her face down in the water with her child clutching her back. A sleeping 60-year-old woman was also crushed by a tree that fell down on her mobile home in Porter on Monday, and authorities on Wednesday found the bodies of a couple in their eighties along with their four great-grandchildren. The family of six had been traveling in a van when flood waters dragged them away.
Harvey began as a hurricane when it first landed in Texas on Friday, but was downgraded to a tropical storm by Saturday. It again made landfall on Wednesday morning near the Texas-Louisiana border, dumping trillions of gallons of rain. Harvey is the largest rainstorm ever to hit the continental U.S.