As the sun finally emerged in Houston after six days of record-breaking rain, the floodwaters from Hurricane Harvey began to slowly recede in some neighborhoods as the storm moved through northeastern Louisiana and toward Mississippi.
More than 30,000 people remained in shelters in Texas. Houston fire officials said they would begin the painstaking search of homes in the city, which remained under more than 3 feet of water in some neighborhoods, to make sure no one was left behind. The process could take up to two weeks.
So far, 38 deaths in Texas are thought to be related to the storm, and officials say they expect that number to rise as floodwaters recede.
At the same time, new dangers are emerging. A flood-ravaged chemical plant 30 miles northeast of Houston suffered a series of explosions early Thursday morning, after flooding and a power outage caused cooling systems to fail and volatile chemical compounds to explode. As the fires burned out of control, fumes sickened several Harris County sheriff's deputies, and residents within a 1.5-mile radius of the plant were evacuated.