At Least 35 Dead and Nine Missing In Our Region
The devastation that has wiped out other areas in Texas has hit home as the flooding has caused dangerous conditions on Dallas-Fort Worth roads. By 10:00 this morning, Dallas Fire – Rescue had already responded to 70 auto accidents and hundreds of motorists stranded in high water. Down the street from my office, University Drive at the I-30 underpass was underwater and there have been many other impassable roads across the Metroplex, notably Loop 12.
Tragically, at least 35 people in our region have died as a result of the flooding, including 15 people in Texas and 20 in Mexico and Oklahoma, and nine people remain missing.
We have already surpassed the Dallas-Fort Worth record for the wettest May in history and more rain is forecast for tonight and tomorrow. Here’s an interesting fact: there has been enough rain across Texas during May to cover the entire state nearly eight inches deep.
Precautions To Take
The road conditions are treacherous so, if possible, restrict your driving or even stay put for the day. If you must be on the road today, the Dallas Fire-Rescue spokesperson advised drivers to not drive through standing water. He recommended mapping out at least two alternative routes to your destination so you don’t feel pressured to take risks. In addition, he reminded drivers to not go around emergency vehicles that are blocking the road because you are putting yourself in the same circumstances from which first responders are rescuing other people.
Also, before heading out on the road, check for National Weather Service flash flood warnings for your area. Seemingly shallow water may actually be quite deep. During a violent storm like we had last night, part of the road may even be washed away. If you try to drive through, your car is likely to stall and waters can quickly rise placing you in serious danger.
Texas Has the Worst Weather in the United States … It’s Not Just Your Imagination
In 2011, the New York Times researched the best and worst metropolitan cities in the United States in terms of natural disasters. For a clue to their findings, look outside your window. The Dallas-Plano-Irving metro area is ranked the worst weather in the country. Our neighbors are not far behind. Six of the 10 worst weather spots are in Texas.
The Dallas Morning News points out that the explosive growth in North Texas contributes to even worse conditions. Parking lots and suburban sprawl elevate flooding. This week’s record-breaking storms will by no means be our last.