Flooded Residents Begin Another Clean-up

Yesterday's heavy rain and flooding caught many residents in south and southeast Houston off-gaurd, but many say they're used to the erratic weather here and will simply clean-up and move-on. Houston Public Radio's Jack Williams reports.

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"I've here 45 years. I'm not going nowhere."

Mervin Mortan has been flooded before and says he'll simply dry things out and fix what needs fixing. He got 3 inches of rain in his living room during Tropical Storm Allison 5 years ago and things are even worse this time around.

"Carpet's wet. Whole wall is wet, up to 6 inches in all the house. The carpet is ruined and got paneling in the house and all the paneling is already buckling. Couch got wet, chairs got wet, had to move the stereo recieiver about 3 inches. It didn't get wet."

Williams Tishini lives just down the street from Mortan in southeast Houston just west of the Gulf Freeway. His home was flooded too, along with a classic car in the front yard. He's already ripped-out carpet and is starting the recovery process.

"We got flood insurance, I mean you just rebuild. You got to move on, go on you know, just start all over. It's a sad thing because you worked for everything that you have in your house and then all of a sudden something like this happens and you wonder yourself, what's going to happen now. You just go on, rebuild. We got to go back to work and just be thankful that your family is okay and your neighbors and your friends are okay and you just go on from there."

Monday's storms caught many residents by surprise, with no indication that what appeared to be a routine thunderstorm would dump as much rain as it did on parts of Houston. Albert Navarro lives on the southeast side and says this is a good lesson.

"Anything can happen at anytime. One has to prepared for any occasion. This is a point in case. No one expected it to get this bad. Cars submerged under water, people trying to salvage what they can out of their homes."

Across the Gulf Freeway near Sims Bayou, Charles Lewis says even though his home didn't flood, he's had about enough of Houston's unpredictable weather.

"I drive a little Nissan 300 ZX, it's real low to the ground and I'm just getting sick of it. Everytime it floods you get damage to your car. You worry about going under the underpass. I was thinking last night, I could not remember the last time it rained like this."

Others say they've come to expect erratic weather in Houston and aren't suprised by much of anything anymore.

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