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Have You Seen This? The pain of evacuating during Hurricane Harvey

Posted August 31

HOUSTON — Hurricane Harvey has forced tens of thousands of people from their homes in the Houston, Texas, area and has reportedly damaged close to 50,000 residences during the torrential downpour and subsequent flooding.

Visiting Texas from her assignment in Istanbul, National Geographic photojournalist Erin Trieb evacuated her mother from her Houston home and caught their experience on camera.

“If I didn’t attach so much sentimental value to everything, I would just be OK,” Trieb’s mom said tearfully as she assessed which things she would be able to take with her as she was leaving to stay with a neighbor. The house was flooded with a foot of water on Aug. 27, prompting her daughter to get her mother and the three family dogs to safer ground, with more than 2 feet of rain still expected to fall.

The dogs — including a 19-year-old dachshund — are shown in the video being transported in garbage cans as the family traverses the river-like “streets” of Houston.

Once her mother was safe, Trieb retrieved her work cameras, checked on her sister’s house and documented some of the catastrophic conditions of Houston.

“This is the worst street, where my sister lives,” Trieb said with her bag of camera equipment on her head. “I’m literally two houses down from my sister in chest deep water and I have to tell you, this is the most nervous I’ve been about dropping a phone.”

The footage just documents one small family’s evacuation story, and it’s hard to imagine how many thousands of people were displaced from their homes. To donate to the people affected by Harvey, click here.

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