First and foremost, I hope you and your families are safe and sound after yesterday's devastating floods. My heart goes out to all who suffered damage to their homes and property. Please know my staff and I are here to help in any way possible. Below I've listed some important information related to this most recent flooding.
Please take care of yourselves and check on your neighbors. Houstonians are caring and resilient people and we will get through this together.
It is an honor to serve you.
Houston City Council Member, District G
1. Report Flooding to 311:
Please report all flooding to 311. As you have no doubt heard, the ReBuild Houston program is "worst first," meaning the areas with the greatest flooding will receive reconstruction prior to areas with less severe flooding. Self-reported 311 information is the main data point going into the SWEET (Storm Water Enhanced Evaluation Technique), which aids in prioritizing drainage projects. It is vitally important that everyone who experienced structural flooding (flooding inside their home or business) report it to 311.
There are four ways to make reports to 311:
Phone: 713-837-0311 (or 3-1-1)
Smartphone: download the mobile app from the site above (or from the Apple App site or the Google Play site) and use it to report matters directly to the City of Houston
If you are reporting flooding online please select "Traffic, Streets, and Drainage," then select "Report Flooding" from the "Maintenance & Repairs" menu. If you experienced flooding on a prior date you did not report (for instance, May 2015 or October 2015), you may also use this same process to report the prior flooding event.
If you have pictures of the flooding you wish to submit, you may report flooding by email and attach pictures, or once you have received the service request number for your report, you may email 311 the number with your pictures and ask to have the pictures attached to your flooding report.
2. Flood Recovery Information:
Currently, this site only has flood recovery information from May 2015 and October 2015, but the city is in the process of updating the information. This site will contain information about flood mitigation assistance, hazard mitigation grants, repairing flood damage if you live in a floodplain, making a flood insurance claim, and other important information to get you and your family back on your feet.
3. City of Houston Trash Pick-Up:
If you have questions about City of Houston trash pick-up, please contact one of the following Solid Waste Department representatives during normal business hours:
(832) 393-0475 office
(832) 393-0448 office
4. Information Regarding Late Filing of Your Federal Income Tax Return:
5. Find your Towed Vehicle:
6. Utility Outages:
CenterPoint Energy crews have been working since the storm began Sunday night to restore service to affected customers. Overall, an estimated 170,000 customers have been impacted with a peak of approximately 120,000. The most heavily impacted areas are Cypress, Greenspoint, Humble and Spring Branch. As of 2:30 p.m. yesterday, approximately 45,000 customers remain without power. CenterPoint will be bringing an additional 30 crews from neighboring utilities and their contractors to assist in the most heavily impacted areas.
CenterPoint crews are having difficulty making it through floodwaters, which is slowing power restoration efforts. Customers should be prepared for extended outages, particularly in some of the harder-hit areas. Estimates of when power will be restored will also be delayed.
Safety is CenterPoint Energy's No. 1 priority, and the company has provided these important electric and natural gas safety tips:
- Stay away from downed power lines. Be especially mindful of downed lines that could be hidden in floodwaters, and treat all downed lines as if they are energized.
- If you experience flooding and water has risen above the electrical outlets in your home, contact a licensed electrician before turning on the main circuit breaker or trying to restore power.
- All electrical appliances and electronic equipment that have been submerged in water need to dry thoroughly for at least one week. Then, have them checked by a qualified repair person before turning them on. Attempting to repair a flood-damaged appliance could result in electrical shock or death. Attempting to restart it could result in further damage and costly repairs.
- If the outside unit of an air conditioning system has been under water, mud and water may have accumulated in the controls. Have the unit checked by a qualified air conditioning technician.
- Do not turn off your natural gas service at the meter; doing so could allow water to enter the natural gas lines.
- Be alert for the smell of natural gas. If you smell gas, leave the area immediately and tell others to leave, too.
- If you smell gas, do not turn the lights on or off, smoke, strike a match, use a cell phone or operate anything that might cause a spark, including a flashlight or a generator.
- Do not attempt to turn natural gas valves on or off. Once safely away from the area, call 888-876-5786, and CenterPoint Energy will send a trained service technician.
- If your home was flooded, call a licensed plumber or gas appliance technician to inspect your appliances and gas piping to make sure they are in good operating condition before calling CenterPoint Energy to reconnect service. This includes outdoor gas appliances including pool heaters, gas grills and gas lights.
- Before conducting debris cleanup, or to locate underground natural gas lines and other underground utility lines before digging on property, call 811 - the nationwide Call Before You Dig number.
- Be aware of where your natural gas meter is located. As debris is put out for heavy trash pickup, make sure it is placed away from the meter. In many areas the meter may be near the curb. If debris is near a gas meter, the mechanized equipment used by trash collectors could pull up the meter, damaging it and causing a potentially hazardous situation. If this happens, leave the area immediately and call CenterPoint Energy at 888-876-5786.
For the latest information on power outages:
The District G office will provide additional information as it becomes available. Above all, please stay safe.