Sure, numbers don’t tell the whole story — not by a longshot — but they sure tell a lot of it.
As Texans struggle to assess the scope of the damage to their homes, property and neighborhoods; as the nation reaches out to hard-hit families, friends and perfect strangers with donations of all kinds; and as a “day of prayer” is established for Sunday, September 3, during which Texans of all faiths will gather in prayer for all those affected by Hurricane Harvey — the numbers are worth taking a close look at for the fullest possible understanding of this disaster.
Here is a look at the storm’s historic devastation, by the numbers, courtesy of several sources listed at the bottom of this article. By no means does this tell the whole story, of course — and some numbers will surely change almost immediately — but it’s an attempt to grasp a storm event that will take the state and its people years to recover.
Americans are very generous, of course — and are doing so much to help.
39: The number of deaths now confirmed as a result of this natural disaster.
$1 million: The amount of money from his personal finances that President Donald Trump is giving to the victims of Harvey. He is also going to return to Texas this weekend to further assess the situation and spend time with residents.
20 trillion gallons: Total amount of rain that fell on the Houston area after Harvey came ashore. That’s a staggering deluge that represents enough water to supply New York City’s needs for over five decades.
$125 billion: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said his state will need federal relief money “far in excess” of this total.
$108 billion in total damages (counting lost input) and $97 billion in destruction: The amounts estimated by Moody’s Analytics.
80 percent: Texans who don’t have flood insurance.
51.88 inches: The amount of rain recorded at Cedar Bayou just outside Houston in under five days, marking a new record of the heaviest rainfall for a storm in the continental U.S., according to the National Weather Service.
10: Gulf Coast region refineries that remain shut down by Harvey. Together, they account for over 3 million barrels per day of output, or nearly 17 percent of the total U.S. refining capacity, according to the Energy Department.
93,942: Homes that are estimated to be damaged or destroyed by Harvey in Texas. That’s according to the Texas Division of Emergency Management.
58: The number of counties in Texas for which Gov. Greg Abbott issued disaster declarations, as of Thursday. Abbott requested and was approved for a presidential disaster declaration for another 29 counties.
34,000-plus: People in shelters across Texas, in 239 different facilities, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety, as of Thursday.
10,000: People rescued by federal forces as of Thursday, said the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). There were also many other Good Samaritan rescues.
200,000: The number of Texas customers without power as of Thursday.
120,000: Residents who were without water in Beaumont, Texas, on Thursday.
24,000: The number of National Guard troops deployed to assist in relief efforts, including all of Texas’ members as well as some from other states. The Texas governor said these troops will be needed for months to search homes and restore the state to order.
1.3 million: The population of Houston without health insurance.
Over 2 million meals and liters of water: The amount distributed by FEMA so far to residents of Texas and Louisiana.
sources: ABC News, Fox News, Huffington Post, the Associated Press, local Texas news agencies