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Harvey kills at least 1, officials warn of mass flooding

By Daniel Uria and Eric DuVall
1/5
Harvey kills at least 1, officials warn of mass flooding
The U.S. Coast Guard conducts a fly over of Port Aransas, Texas after a search and rescue mission Saturday during Hurricane Harvey. The storm has been blamed for one death so far. Photo by U.S. Coast Guard/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 26 (UPI) -- Texas officials announced the first fatality associated with Hurricane Harvey, which came ashore in Texas on Friday night with 130 mph wind and torrential rain.

Rockport, Texas, Mayor C.J. Wax told the Washington Post at least one person died as a result of the storm, but cautioned emergency responders were still not able to fully assess the damage and said there may be more.

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Rockport City Manager Kevin Carruth told KIII at least 10 people were treated for injuries related to the Hurricane Harvey after the eye of the storm passed through the city Friday night.

Harvey made landfall as a Category 4 storm the first storm of that intensity since 2004 and more powerful than Hurricane Ike, the last storm to strike Texas.

RELATED Hurricane Harvey downgraded to Category 1 hurricane after landfall

Ike caused more than $30 billion in damage in Texas and Louisiana.

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Carruth said the roof of a single-story senior housing development collapsed and several people were taken to a local jail for assessment and treatment.

He added that a courthouse and historic downtown area were heavily damaged.

RELATED Trump signs Texas hurricane disaster declaration

Rockport Fire Chief Steve Sims told ABC News early Saturday 22 firefighters remained hunkered down at the local fire station.

The department had about 25 to 30 pending calls Saturday, but firefighters were unable to respond until weather conditions improve.

"We're unable to get out on the streets yet," Sims said. "As soon as the weather permits us, the winds get anywhere reasonable. We have been working on lists trying to prioritize the calls that we have waiting."

RELATED Texas officials order evacuations ahead of Hurricane Harvey

Once the imminent threat posed by wind abates, officials said potentially deadly flooding will follow. Some rivers in the area are expected to crest 10 to 20 feet above flood level. Communities across south Texas were expected to experience 15 to 30 inches of rain, with isolated areas seeing as much as 40 inches.

In Houston, the nation's fourth-largest city, waves of torrential rain were reported and a tornado touched down in a suburban neighborhood.

Harvey also left about 20,000 cruise ship passengers stranded after the Port of Galveston closed about noon Friday.

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Three Carnival cruises and one Royal Caribbean ship headed for shelter at Galveston Island were turned away.

"We have about 20,000 people on four cruise ships that are trying to enter the port," Roger Quiroga, director of economic development and external relations for the Port of Galveston told The Daily News.

Port officials expect to know more about the ships after a conference call with the cruise companies at 11 a.m. and believe improved weather could permit an earlier return.

"Depending on the weather, we may be able to bring some ships in on Sunday," Peter Simons, interim director for the Port of Galveston, said.

The Coast Guard also responded to vessels in distress near the Lydia Ann Channel near Port Aransas

A water boil notice for residents in Ingleside in San Patrico County was issued on at about 8:16 a.m urging residents to boil water for at least 2 minutes before using it to brush teeth, drink or cook with.

Heavy winds caused property damage throughout the state, blowing down walls, roofs and other structures such as traffic lights.

Reports of downed trees and power lines were also made in Rockport and Corpus Christi as more than 300,000 of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas were left without power along the Gulf Coast.

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President Donald Trump tweeted commending local officials for their work handling the hurricane while he was at Camp David on Saturday morning.

"Closely monitoring Hurricane Harvey from Camp David," he wrote. "We are leaving nothing to chance. City, State and Federal Govs. working great together!"

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