May 17, 2019

Contact: Jessica Beemer (832) 393-3008

Rain Event Recap

Houston, TX -  Council Member Dave Martin would like for residents to be aware that thanks to reports made to our office there has been a policy change to the Houston 311 system. After previous major flood events like  Harvey and the Tax Day flood, the city created event-specific service request numbers in 311 to collect city-wide flooding and storm debris data for FEMA reporting. Last week's storms were not as widespread, but still generated localized flooding and storm debris. This created some confusion among 311 operators on how to record flooding and debris reports.
Since storms are becoming more frequent, and even a relatively small storm can produce severe results, thanks to the diligence of the District E office, 311 is making the flooding and storm debris service requests permanent. This means that anytime anyone reports flooding or storm debris, whether it's a Tax Day or just a Tuesday, Houston 311 will create a service request number and send it to the appropriate department to process. As this is a new change, please continue to report any issues with 311 to the District E Office by calling 832-393-3008. As of today, this policy change has been shared with all 311 agents.

The heavy rainfall event that occurred May 7 - 9 was a slow-moving storm system that resulted in two rounds of heavy rainfall that severely impacted the northeast and southeast Harris County region. District E communities that were impacted by these rain events include Kingwood, Huffman, Crosby, in the Lake Houston Area as well as Sagemont, and Home Owned Estates located in Clear Lake/Southeast Houston. 

The rain that occurred on May 7 produced a one-hour rain rate of 4 inches at US 59 on the West Fork of the San Jacinto River. At FM 1485 on the East Fork of the San Jacinto River a six-hour rainfall rate of 7.9 inches was recorded. At Horsepen Creek and Bay Area Boulevard a twelve-hour rain rate of 5.4 inches was recorded. During that same twelve-hours a rain rate of 5.8 inches was recorded at Armand Bayou and Genoa-Red Bluff Road.

Two days later on May 9 lower rainfall rates were experienced which did not exacerbate flooding issues over the weekend. The one-hour rain rate at US 59 on the West Fork of the San Jacinto River was 1.8 inches and the six-hour rain rate at FM1485 on the East Fork of the San Jacinto River was 2.2 inches. On May 9 at Horsepen Creek and Bay Area Boulevard a twelve-hour rain rate of 4.9 inches was recorded. During that same twelve-hours a rain rate of 5.4 inches was recorded at Armand Bayou and Genoa-Red Bluff Road.

During this rain event, intense rainfall rates greatly exceeded internal and primary drainage system s capabilities resulting in significant and at times deep street flooding and sheetflow that was especially evident in the Kingwood area on Tuesday afternoon.  On May 8, City of Houston contractors, as well as Harris County Flood Control, investigated their designated drainage systems and  determined the flooding was potentially caused by development upstream in Montgomery County that sent large volumes of sheetflow into the subdivision and Taylor Gully (G103-80-03-1), which is maintained by Harris County Flood Control. 

The City of Houston contractors have reviewed several thousand feet of sanitary sewer and storm water drainage lines since May 8 that have shown no blockages or debris. This lack of blockage and debris points to again the system being overloaded due to the amount of rain that was experienced in a short period of time. If you feel that your area was impacted by a possible drainage blockage please report that to 311 and follow up with an email to the District E office ( Harris County Flood Control has continued to be active in the area reviewing their open channels for debris and has been working  to remove as quickly as possible.
Since last week the City of Houston has identified over 380 residences with structural flooding and storm debris, over half those cases were entered by District E staff. If you are beginning to make repairs to your home, please ensure the appropriate permit has been obtained from the Houston Permitting Center . By state law, all electrical work requires a permit and must be completed by a licensed electrical contractor. For questions, contact Electrical Inspections at (832) 394-8860.
Permits are not required for the installation or replacement of thermostats and grills that are part of the HVAC system. Permits are required for all other mechanical work. For questions, contact Mechanical Inspections at (832) 394-8850.
Permits are not required to replace bathroom or kitchen faucets, ballcocks or water control valves, garbage disposals, or water closets. Permits are required for all other plumbing work, including sinks. For questions, contact Plumbing Inspections at (832) 394-8870.
For homes located in the floodplain, you must contact the Floodplain Management Office prior to making any repairs at (832) 394-8854. For information on flood damage repair requirements, visit The City of Houston's interactive mapping system can help residents find their estimated Base Flood Elevation (BFE) or 500 year flood elevation for their property online here (must use internet explorer), instructions to navigate this site can be found here.
The Houston Permitting Center Main Office is located at 1002 Washington Avenue, Houston, Texas, 77002 and open Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Applications can be routed from the Kingwood and Clear Lake Satellite permitting offices to the Main Office for customers not wanting to drive, but the process will be greatly expedited if the customers are informed beforehand of the Flood Department's requirements and expectations.

  • Kingwood Satellite Office at 3915 Rustic Woods, Kingwood, Tx 77339, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Clear Lake Satellite Office at 1335 Regents Park Drive, Suite 130, Houston, Tx 77058, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
In advance of Hurricane Season, which begins on June 1, it is crucial that residents know and understand that flash flooding can occur at any time and it is strongly recommended that all residents take precautions like preparing emergency kits  and purchasing flood insurance. Please keep in mind that flood insurance does not go in to effect immediately and has a 30-day waiting period between the purchase date and effective date.
Please contact the District E office by phone (832) 393-3008 or email with any questions.