Some Houstonians still unable to access homes

As a few people start returning to their devastating homes - the emotions are overwhelming.

HOUSTON, TX - One week after Hurricane Harvey hit Houston some homeowners are still unable to access their homes. That's the case for residents of the Ethan's Glen community in west Houston. 

"So many of us have lived in here for a long time and it's just killing us all," said Chip Smith as he showed a KVUE News crew the damage via boat.

Inside the condo community, cars are submerged, water is up to many front door knobs and homes are flooded.

"It's heart sickening because this place is so beautiful when it's normal," Smith said. 

But Friday, Buffalo Bayou claimed Ethan's Glen.

"We don't know when the water will go down first. We don't know if it's going to be a week or three weeks before we can get to some of the units."

Smith has lived in his home for 32 years and says it's never flooded. The storm took his community by surprise.

"Somebody said we have to move the cars again. So I got one of mine out to Memorial," Smith said pointing toward the street that's less than 100 yards from where he stood. "And before I could get back and get my second car, it had gone under. That's how fast the water came up."

Of the 288 condos in Ethan's Glen, Smith, who is on the neighborhood association board, estimates two-thirds of the homes still have water inside. 

Brian Reynolds' first floor is flooded. 

"It's been a little bit of torture because ever since the hurricane stopped it was sun, no rain and we come home to a foot, foot and a half of water. Next day another foot and I guess it's because they had to release the water so it's been creeping up around here for the last couple of days," said Reynolds.

Buffalo Bayou is about 75 feet away from the property. It's unable to drain because water is being released from reservoirs, leaving residents with no choice but to boat in and out to save what they can.

"I'm just trying to salvage what clothing me, my wife and my daughter have upstairs and bedding and fabric before the mold gets to it," said Reynolds. 

He moved into his home three months ago so his daughter with special needs can attend a school nearby. Through the storm, she is what's keeping him going.

"She doesn't even know what's going on. She's like the only thing that keeps us sane right now," Reynolds said. She's literally been playing and happy and just kind of takes our mind off the situation right now."

A situation that is seemingly dire. But the neighbors say together they'll get through it, Houston Strong.

© 2017 KVUE-TV


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