Navy Rescue Helos Scramble to Keep Pace with Harvey

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — When he fired up the MH-60 Seahawk helicopter Wednesday morning, Navy Lt. Cmdr. Pat Dunn thought it was going to be an easier day over the floodwaters of Hurricane Harvey.

Monday had been intense. The pilot and his crewmembers, who came from Naval Station Norfolk, Va., for search-and-rescue duty, rescued 215 people and 12 animals on their first day flying into the devastation in the Houston area.

Tuesday had been much drier, and the crews that went out from this college town northwest of Houston did not perform a single rescue.

As this storm has proven, however, no two days are alike.

Wednesday brought a fresh round of tropical storm winds and rain, this time farther southeast, in the cities of Beaumont and Port Arthur. Floodwaters rose quickly, and people were trapped. A voluntary evacuation was issued for 1,000 families in north Beaumont, where 24 inches of rain had fallen, according to The Weather Channel.

The weather was very rough, visibility was down to a quarter-mile at times and cloud cover was low, Dunn said. “There was lots of driving rain.”

There were people in trouble — trapped in their home, they said.

To read the full August 31, 2017 article from Stars and Stripes, click here.