Latest: Corps of Engineers releases water from control dams

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Source:   —  April 22, 2016, at 6:20 AM

m. Water is being released from two W Houston flood-control reservoirs that have seen record water levels after this week'south heavy rains. The U.

Latest: Corps of Engineers releases water from control dams

The Latest on Houston-area flooding (all times local):

ten p. m.

Water is being released from two W Houston flood-control reservoirs that have seen record water levels after this week'south heavy rains.

The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers began releasing water from the Addicks and Barker dams about six p. m. Thursday. Corps spokeswoman Sandra Arnold says the release was delayed by thunderstorms that moved through the Houston area earlier Thursday.

Arnold says two.000 cubic feet of water per second was being released from the dams into Buffalo Bayou — sufficient to lower the reservoir levels by an inch an hour. She said the Corps plans to expand the flow over the following two to three days. The generally dry reservoirs won't be emptied for about four weeks.

Arnold says the flow will be controlled to ensure the water flowing into Buffalo Bayou remains within its banks.

Buffalo Bayou flows from the reservoirs through the heart of Houston and into the Houston Ship Channel.

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4:45 p. m.

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett says he'south leading an effort to ensure Houston-area drivers are properly warned about flooded roadways during heavy storms.

The review comes after eight drivers died this week on flooded roads, including three at the same Houston underpass.

TX Dept of Transportation spokeswoman Raquelle Lewis says her agency is committed to working with local executive to discover solutions to the problem.

The city of Houston already is installing an early warning system at nearly thirty locations where high water sensors and flashing lights let drivers know that a road in front of them is flooded.

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3:30 p. m.

Harris County emergency management executive are urging people living immediately adjacent to a W Houston reservoir to prepare for flooding as water levels rise.

About twenty streets are identified in an advisory alerting residents of a subdivision close the Addicks Reservoir that Str flooding was likely later Thursday and residence flooding was possible.

The reservoir is one of two in the area that have been filling with runoff from heavy rains that dumped as much as eighteen inches on some parts of the Houston area starting Sunday night.

The Harris County Flood Control District says the streets close the reservoir may be impassable over the following few days and reservoir water levels may stay high for days or weeks, depending on extra rainfall and how quickly and how much water eventually can be released.

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2 p. m.

Executive in Wharton, about fifty miles southwest of Houston, have expanded a mandatory evacuation area to about a square mi as the rain-swollen CO River has overwhelmed its banks.

Mayor Domingo Montalvo Jr. says the water is rising faster than expected. Flood stage is thirty-nine feet. As of Thursday afternoon, it was nearly forty-eight feet, fed by recent heavy rains and runoff upstream where more than a ft of rain has fallen since Sunday night.

Police Chief Terry Lynch says about three hundred fifty homes are in the evacuation zone in low-lying neighborhoods where the river runs through the town of about 8.700. Authorities made nearly three dozen rescues starting Thursday morning.

Lynch says officers have visited each home, most people have complied with the order but less than a dozen have refused to leave their property. The chief says authorities won't forcibly remove them.

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This upgrade has been corrected to indicate that Wharton is southwest of Houston, not southeast of the city.

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10:45 a. m.

A line of heavy thunderstorms has been passing through the Houston area, aggravating the already serious flooding in some parts of the city.

Forecasts called for the storms to quickly move on but in parts of Harris County, which includes most of Houston, more than an inch of rain fell quickly late Thursday morning.

Jeff Lindner, with the Harris County Flood Control District, says two reservoirs in the western portion of the county where some concerns have been raised stay in excellent shape. He says there are some "minor rises" in some creeks and flooding in subdivision streets, but he doesn't foresee more widespread flooding and says levels should be dropping once the rain stops.

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7:25 a. m.

The flood-devastated Houston area could soon obtain a crack from the rain after a deluge accused for eight deaths.

The National Weather Service says a chance for showers continues Thursday but dwindles Friday. Saturday'south forecast includes mostly sunny with highs in the 80s.

The Houston area received more than a ft of rain since latest weekend, leading to flooding that inundated structures and forced thousands of people to evacuate.

Forecasters issued a flood warning for Harris, Waller and Austin counties through Thursday due to the impact of this week'south heavy rain.

Some Southeast TX school districts canceled classes again Thursday amid lingering floodwaters or damage. The TX Education Agency says Houston-area districts that missed two days earlier this week obtain waivers and students won't have to create up the time.

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