Houston seeking supplies, shelter for 10,000 more displaced by floods - mayor

Houston’s police chief told the briefing his force had rescued well over 3,500 people so far.

Residents navigate a flooded street that has been inundated with water from Hurricane Harvey on 27 August 2017 in Houston, Texas. Picture: AFP

HOUSTON - Houston is expanding its shelter capacity for people displaced by flooding from Storm Harvey and has asked federal authorities for supplies for an additional 10,000 people, some from outside the city, Mayor Sylvester Turner said on Tuesday.

“We’re not turning anyone away, but it does mean we need to expand our capabilities and capacity,” Turner told reporters at a briefing on the emergency, saying he would announce the names of the newly opening shelters once they had time to set up to receive people.

Houston’s police chief told the briefing his force had rescued well over 3,500 people so far. He said police continued to provide security even as they rescued stranded residents, arresting armed robbers and looters while helping victims overnight.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump is making an all-out push to show the federal government's responsiveness to the massive storm that has lashed the Texas coast and caused catastrophic flooding.

Trump was en route to Texas to observe work to help the state recover from tropical storm Harvey’s devastation.

The storm, bringing torrents of rain and all but paralysing Houston, marks the first time trump has been tested by a major natural disaster at the start of his administration.

At least five people have died in the storm while thousands have had to be rescued.