Texas has been hit by Harvey – the most powerful hurricane in more than 50 years – leaving many parts of the state in chaos.
The hurricane came ashore on Friday near Corpus Christi, about 220 miles (354 km) south of Houston. Since then Harvey has lingered around Texas’ Gulf Coast and according to weather forecast, it will remain there for several more days bringing in rain and windy conditions.
Amidst all the mayhem, a photo of a dog carrying a bag of food in the middle of the storm, has gone viral. According to reports on the Internet, Salvador Segovia left his grandson’s dog, Otis, in his home’s back porch, along with food and water after the storm. But, probably scared, the dog opened the screen door and ran away on Friday night.
“I stuck my head out yelling and no Otis. The following morning, I got out and kept yelling, circled the block and everything and nothing,” Segovia was quoted as saying by the Independent.
The dog was later spotted by Tiele Dockens, who had gone out to check on the houses of some friends and families who had evacuated to escape the storm. She saw the dog was walking down a street carrying a bag of dog food. Dockens took a picture of the dog and posted it on her Facebook page, after which it became viral, making the dog an online celebrity.
She wrote, “This dog is walking around Sinton TX carrying a entire bag of dog food with him. LOL refugee.”
In another post she wrote, “Owner is found. He is not a stray he just got out on his street. Dogs name is Otis.”
The post has got more than 16 thousand likes and more than 35 thousand shares.
Dockens followed the dog as she wanted to be sure he wasn’t lost and ended up outside Segovia’s house.
He is quoted as saying by the Daily, “This lady comes by and tells me, ‘Is that your dog coming down the road?’ I turn around, there comes Otis and he’s carrying food.”
The brown German shepherd was wet and muggy. Segovia says he walked in, put down the bag and lay on the floor.
He reveals that Otis is a much-loved dog and people admire whenever they see him and also feed him.
Otis is said to take off alone and knows his way around town.
Segovia feels that the dog may have gone to the lumber store before he was found on Saturday morning and must have somehow grabbed a bag of Ol’ Roy dog food.
He has been watching Otis for grandson, Carter, who is five years old and who left Stinton with his parents to get away from the hurricane.
Otis is probably about 6 years old, Segovia said.
Hurricane Harvey devastates Texas:
Meanwhile, rains have submerged cars and turned freeways into rivers, with more flooding expected when the storm shifts back in the direction of Houston.
Harvey`s center was 90 miles (148 km) southwest of Houston on Monday morning and forecast to arc slowly toward the city through Wednesday, with the worst floods expected later that day and on Thursday.
Schools, airports and office buildings in the nation`s fourth largest city were shut on Monday as chest-high water filled some neighborhoods in the low-lying city that is home to about 2.3 million people.
The metropolitan area, home to 6.8 million people, also is the nation`s refining and petrochemical hub, which has been crippled by the storm. Numerous refiners shut operations, likely for weeks.
Torrential rain also hit areas more than 150 miles (240 km) away, swelling rivers upstream and causing a surge that was heading toward the Houston area, where numerous rivers and streams already have been breached. Some areas have already seen as much as 30 inches (76 cm) of rain, according to the National Weather Service, as per Reuters.
By the end of the week in some Texas coastal areas the total precipitation could reach 50 inches (127 cm), which is the average rainfall for an entire year, forecasters said.
Harvey is expected to produce an additional 15 to 25 inches (38 to 63 cm) of rain through Friday in the upper Texas coast and into southwestern Louisiana, the National Hurricane Center said.
More than 30,000 people are expected to be placed temporarily in shelters, FEMA Administrator Brock Long said at a news conference today.
The George Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston now has about 2,500 people, up from 1,000 last night, as people continue to arrive at the center.
(With Agency inputs)