Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

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Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by Crimsontide » Fri Sep 01, 2017 8:22 pm

With all the flooding in the Houston area I'm wondering how Livesoft came out up in the Woodlands, any flooding up there?

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by CyclingDuo » Fri Sep 01, 2017 9:12 pm

Crimsontide wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 8:22 pm
With all the flooding in the Houston area I'm wondering how Livesoft came out up in the Woodlands, any flooding up there?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZqZ5ruVCT0

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by LadyGeek » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:00 pm

This thread is now in the Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community forum (Bogleheads).

Use this forum to post comments, concerns, provide assistance for Bogleheads affected by Hurricane Harvey.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:12 pm

Some flooding in The Woodlands, but about the same as in 1994, 2015, 2016, or maybe a little more. Total accumulated rainfall around here was about 27 inches which is less than the 30-35 inches that Houston got. You may have seen higher numbers reported, but the news media picked the highest single gauge down by Galveston I guess to make things sound worse even though even 35 inches is terrible. Beaumont and Port Arthur appear to be much worse.

Here is drone video of May 2016 flooding in The Woodlands:
https://vimeo.com/168482153 (anything flooded in this video also flooded this week)

Nothing around me flooded, but I'm sure the usual homes in the 0.2%-probability flood plain did. You can find maps online.

Even 90% of Houston property didn't flood, but you wouldn't know it from the national media.
"According to the Harris County Flood Control District, there are an estimated 136,000 flooded structures in the Houston area, which equates to roughly 10 percent of registered structures in Harris County Appraisal District."

Don't forget that Harris County is larger than Rhode Island.

Land and roads flooded as they were designed to do in order to help drain away water, so roads that turned into rivers and creeks became impassable death traps until the water receded.

Of course, it is a tragedy for those with losses. See also the other Harvey threads.
Last edited by livesoft on Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:22 pm

But home prices will now pop (and I'm not writing about a bubble):
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-storm ... SKCN1BC5QY
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by fundseeker » Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:51 pm

livesoft, Glad to hear you did not have flooding. But, since you are from those parts, do you know if there is any truth to a rumor that the Humble and Kingwood areas only flood because someone decides to open the flood gates on Lake Conroe, to keep that area from flooding? Just wondering. Thanks!

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:09 pm

One can read/watch about the dam: http://abc13.com/dam-release-ramps-up-c ... s/2350065/
and http://www.yourconroenews.com/news/arti ... 045408.php

Basically, if you don't want dams to fail, you cannot let water flow around them or over them. SJRA has written published rules that anybody can read for what to do and when to do it as a dam is about to be breached. Those rules appeared to have been followed.

Some parts of Humble and Kingwood are in flood plain and of course more water release will inundate those homes. So to avoid catastrophic dam failure, water must be released. But these areas could flood without opening the dam flood gates if there was enough rainfall on them.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:24 pm

This is also interesting about the 1994 flood and the dam release:
http://caselaw.findlaw.com/tx-court-of- ... 21351.html
The dam operator was sued, but the suit was not successful. That flood was not caused by a tropical storm nor hurricane ... just lots of rain.

Note that Cypress Creek factors into the Humble flooding and that creek certainly flooded upstream and is not dammed.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by badbreath » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:28 pm

Good to hear you are doing well. My two cents seems overall much better handled than Katrina.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:36 pm

We are thankful, but we were probably much more informed about potential flooding issues than 99.95% of homeowners.

But one can imagine that anybody buying in the next month or so will also be aware of what addresses flood.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by denovo » Sat Sep 02, 2017 3:25 am

livesoft wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:36 pm
We are thankful, but we were probably much more informed about potential flooding issues than 99.95% of homeowners.

But one can imagine that anybody buying in the next month or so will also be aware of what addresses flood.
'What do you think about this article?

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/201 ... zones.html

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by Eric76 » Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:15 am

Interesting to get a first hand account of the situation. Thank you. Sensationalistic reporting for ratings clearly doesn't begin and end with financial news. I've tuned it all out.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:31 am

denovo wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 3:25 am
'What do you think about this article?

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/201 ... zones.html
An excellent article. The NYTimes reporters have written excellent work throughout this ordeal. Apparently many folks do not realize that water levels go higher than the 0.2%-probability. That is, higher elevation than the 0.2% line, does not mean the probability becomes 0.0%.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by F150HD » Sat Sep 02, 2017 8:10 am

livesoft wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:12 pm
Even 90% of Houston property didn't flood, but you wouldn't know it from the national media.
interesting. National news makes it sound like the entire city is destroyed and abandoned.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 8:11 am

Eric76 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:15 am
Interesting to get a first hand account of the situation.
With all due respect, I did not give a first hand account of the situation. I do not live where folks had their homes flooded.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 8:14 am

F150HD wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 8:10 am
livesoft wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:12 pm
Even 90% of Houston property didn't flood, but you wouldn't know it from the national media.
interesting. National news makes it sound like the entire city is destroyed and abandoned.
Read the article linked by denovo. The white space on the map was apparently not flooded. Or maybe the roads flooded, but not high enough to affect buildings. There is lots of white space. The pink areas flood often, so that should not have been unexpected. The gray areas are water features, so they have water in them, but no buildings.

Even at 10% flooding that affects more people in Harris County than the number of people that live in the entire state of Wyoming. And it also doesn't count the enormous number affected in adjacent counties.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:27 pm

I think this article describes what might be typical for the folks who had homes that were flooded:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/02/us/f ... overy.html
You are going to get more immediate help from friends and family than anyplace else, so be sure to have those in place before your next disaster.

The article does not describe the case for folks who lived in apartments that flooded.

Also imagine how much worse it would be without a smart phone and in internet connection. A computer [laptop] is helpful, too.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by rec7 » Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:37 pm

livesoft wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:12 pm
Some flooding in The Woodlands, but about the same as in 1994, 2015, 2016, or maybe a little more. Total accumulated rainfall around here was about 27 inches which is less than the 30-35 inches that Houston got. You may have seen higher numbers reported, but the news media picked the highest single gauge down by Galveston I guess to make things sound worse even though even 35 inches is terrible. Beaumont and Port Arthur appear to be much worse.

Here is drone video of May 2016 flooding in The Woodlands:
https://vimeo.com/168482153 (anything flooded in this video also flooded this week)

Nothing around me flooded, but I'm sure the usual homes in the 0.2%-probability flood plain did. You can find maps online.

Even 90% of Houston property didn't flood, but you wouldn't know it from the national media.
"According to the Harris County Flood Control District, there are an estimated 136,000 flooded structures in the Houston area, which equates to roughly 10 percent of registered structures in Harris County Appraisal District."

Don't forget that Harris County is larger than Rhode Island.

Land and roads flooded as they were designed to do in order to help drain away water, so roads that turned into rivers and creeks became impassable death traps until the water receded.

Of course, it is a tragedy for those with losses. See also the other Harvey threads.
Thanks Livesoft the tv made it sound like Houston was all under water.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by hornet96 » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:05 pm

rec7 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:37 pm
Thanks Livesoft the tv made it sound like Houston was all under water.
I don't know about all of Houston, but I do know that Friendswood (just to the southeast of Houston) was under at least 5-6 feet of water. My father-in-law returned to his house a few days ago, to basically discover he had lost everything in his one story house. All furniture, appliances, clothes, electronics - everything. The Jeep in his garage, a Harley motorcycle - everything. The only silver lining is that he has practiced Boglehead principles all of his life (paid off house & cars, mostly old "stuff" in the house, adequate insurance, maxed out retirement accounts and a lot of additional taxable savings) - so he has the financial resources to get through this, as well as a large extended family to help him recover.

He also shared a story about his neighbor who apparently evacuated a little too late, and had to cling to a garden hose that was attached to someone's house while they fought the "current" of at least 6 feet of water, until help could arrive (they are ok).

So yes, while some of the surrounding areas of Houston may have come out of this relatively unscathed, I largely don't think the media is oversensationalizing this as I have first hand knowledge of how bad it really is. I witnessed my father-in-law cry for the first time the other night when he told my wife that all of his old pictures and videos had been lost.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:12 pm

hornet96 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:05 pm
So yes, while some of the surrounding areas of Houston may have come out of this relatively unscathed, I largely don't think the media is oversensationalizing this as I have first hand knowledge of how bad it really is.
There is no doubt that It sucks to be in the 10% to 15% with flooded losses.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by hornet96 » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:39 pm

livesoft wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:12 pm
hornet96 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:05 pm
So yes, while some of the surrounding areas of Houston may have come out of this relatively unscathed, I largely don't think the media is oversensationalizing this as I have first hand knowledge of how bad it really is.
There is no doubt that It sucks to be in the 10% to 15% with flooded losses.
Or the 10,000+ human beings who are still staying in shelters due to the storm. But discussing this in terms of low percentages is more comforting to think about so we'll go with that.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by mouses » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:45 pm

hornet96 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:05 pm
I largely don't think the media is oversensationalizing this as I have first hand knowledge of how bad it really is. I witnessed my father-in-law cry for the first time the other night when he told my wife that all of his old pictures and videos had been lost.
Oh, I'm sorry. Any chance other family members or friends have some of those that they could copy for him?

I have scanned in quite a bit and have copies of my stuff both at home and in a safe deposit box, but the bank is close to where I live, so might be affected also. Nothing could replace my Mom's cookbooks, etc. but they are on my grab when evacuating list.

Some of those photos of animals are heart rending. One newspaper even published a set of photos of animals being rescued by their owners, but one photo seemed instead to be of a dog who couldn't keep up trying to swim behind the apparent owner who was maybe forty feet ahead and not looking back. I am really worried about that dog.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:50 pm

I'm happy to discuss uncomfortable subjects.

It is clear to me that many people feel guilty about not being affected. They will donate money, diapers, towels, and their time and express empathy, but inside they are glad and thankful they are not on the receiving end.

And many people feel guilty about being affected. A friend's mother had an emergency alert button on a necklace and did not want to bother anyone by using it.

Also it is clear that when the spit hits the fan, many people stop functioning as they used to. Clear thinking can go out the window and one may not even realize that happening to themselves.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by denovo » Sat Sep 02, 2017 6:15 pm

livesoft wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:31 am
denovo wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 3:25 am
'What do you think about this article?

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/201 ... zones.html
An excellent article. The NYTimes reporters have written excellent work throughout this ordeal. Apparently many folks do not realize that water levels go higher than the 0.2%-probability. That is, higher elevation than the 0.2% line, does not mean the probability becomes 0.0%.
A quick follow-up. My understanding is that two of FEMA's designation's are Zone X and Zone X(.02). Zone X(.02) means it's in a 500 year flood plain, and Zone X means lower probability than the 500 year flood plain , i.e less than .02 percent. So according to that article, 40 percent of the flood damage was in areas of Zone X, wow, that's really something. Am I getting that right?

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 6:54 pm

Yes, you are getting that right.

My conclusion is that some areas had more rain than a 0.2% probability event for the current lay of the land topography.

Note that getting 30 inches of rain in 5 hours is a different event than getting 30 inches of rain in 5 days. Rate is very important.

I am told the flood map standard is based on 24-hour rainfall distribution, but almost a bell curve with peak around 12-13 hours based on historical rainfall amounts. Maybe some experts can comment on that.

In any event there is now some new history.

Clearly, FEMA maps need to be updated and that will cost money. But everyone knows what flooded this past week, there is no rush to make those updates.
Last edited by livesoft on Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:17 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by McGilicutty » Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:03 pm

Interesting weather radar GIF that shows the path and intensity of Harvey:

https://gfycat.com/WanTepidEwe

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sat Sep 02, 2017 9:01 pm

livesoft wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 10:12 pm
..., but the news media picked the highest single gauge down by Galveston ...
hornet96 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:05 pm
rec7 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 12:37 pm
Thanks Livesoft the tv made it sound like Houston was all under water.
I don't know about all of Houston, but I do know that Friendswood (just to the southeast of Houston) was under at least 5-6 feet of water. [...]
And Friendswood is partly in Galveston County. And the "highest single gauge" reading that I saw (> 50 inches) was just off N. Friendswood Drive on Winding Road at Mary's Creek (see below). So about twice as much rainfall as up north of Houston. With Friendswood nearer to the coast and at elevation 20 to 35 feet above msl, they were simply doomed. Mary's Creek was 30 ft above msl for a few days.

Image
Rainfall every 12 hours
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by novicemoney » Sat Sep 02, 2017 10:32 pm

livesoft wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:09 pm
One can read/watch about the dam: http://abc13.com/dam-release-ramps-up-c ... s/2350065/
and http://www.yourconroenews.com/news/arti ... 045408.php

Basically, if you don't want dams to fail, you cannot let water flow around them or over them. SJRA has written published rules that anybody can read for what to do and when to do it as a dam is about to be breached. Those rules appeared to have been followed.

Some parts of Humble and Kingwood are in flood plain and of course more water release will inundate those homes. So to avoid catastrophic dam failure, water must be released. But these areas could flood without opening the dam flood gates if there was enough rainfall on them.
Yes the flood drama is still playing out in west Houston, particularly the Energy Corridor. The Addicks and Barkley Reservoirs were greatly overfilled and the Army Corps of Engineers has been releasing water into Buffalo Bayou. The result is that while water is receding in other areas, flooding is increasing in these areas. My son has had to evacuate his apartment in the Energy Corridor and is working from "home" because his company building is also flooded and closed. Mind you they had some flooding in the surrounding area until Tuesday when the decision to release water from the 2 dams was made to avoid catastrophic structural failure. The first floor structures are now flooded with power and water now lost. The corps is estimating water releases for the next 2-3 weeks. There is that much water buildup. It is unfortunate but necessary.

While it is true that watching TV reports conveys the impression that the whole city is flooded, it may seem like it if your little part of the world is underwater. My son will be fine, he is with a friend in a safe place and will probably recover most of his things when he can get access to his apartment.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by mouses » Sun Sep 03, 2017 2:35 am

I don't know how much of the area is flooded, but the nytimes reports "Town After Town Under Water in the 100 Miles From Houston to Beaumont." There's obviously gigantic damage regardless of the %.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/201 ... oding.html

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by an_asker » Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:11 am

livesoft wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 8:11 am
Eric76 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:15 am
Interesting to get a first hand account of the situation.
With all due respect, I did not give a first hand account of the situation. I do not live where folks had their homes flooded.
It all depends on the correct interpretation of the phrase 'first hand' ;-)

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:22 am

novicemoney wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 10:32 pm
The Addicks and Barkley Reservoirs were greatly overfilled and the Army Corps of Engineers has been releasing water into Buffalo Bayou.
Although it has been reported nationally folks may have missed it: These are flood control reservoirs. The Addicks reservoir had zero, nada, zilch water in it before Harvey. The rain from Harvey filled it up. Basically it is normally dry open shrub land. I think Barkley is the same way.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by Allan » Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:28 am

For those of us who have lived in Houston for a long time (me, since my birth in 1951), there was a lot of news in the 60's and 70's about subsidence of the region because of groundwater (underground) consumption from the aquifers. The area has dropped 10'-12' in sea level in the last 100 years.

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/ho ... 951625.php

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by dwickenh » Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:53 am

Allan wrote:
Sun Sep 03, 2017 8:28 am
For those of us who have lived in Houston for a long time (me, since my birth in 1951), there was a lot of news in the 60's and 70's about subsidence of the region because of groundwater (underground) consumption from the aquifers. The area has dropped 10'-12' in sea level in the last 100 years.

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/ho ... 951625.php
Great article to understand the results of water being removed from under ground. 1-9 feet of sinking ground would lead to flooding in most cities.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was Thecky Woodlands Flooded

Post by Txsman » Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:02 pm

My son lost all he had in Houston. 20 Teachers showed up to help him and his wife clean up the apartment. Neighbors helping neighbors is how it is done in Texas. I am grateful to be a Boglehead, living below my means and financially sound. Now I can give back to family and friends who are not so lucky.

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by nedsaid » Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:35 pm

I saw the video that Livesoft posted. I was impressed at the quality of the video and what a drone can do. It gave me some idea of the scale of the problem down there. Thank you for posting the link.
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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was Thecky Woodlands Flooded

Post by denovo » Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:39 pm

Txsman wrote:
Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:02 pm
My son lost all he had in Houston. 20 Teachers showed up to help him and his wife clean up the apartment. Neighbors helping neighbors is how it is done in Texas. I am grateful to be a Boglehead, living below my means and financially sound. Now I can give back to family and friends who are not so lucky.
Was he on the 1st floor?

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Re: Where is Livesoft? Was The Woodlands Flooded

Post by livesoft » Sun Sep 03, 2017 7:24 pm

nedsaid wrote:
Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:35 pm
I saw the video that Livesoft posted. I was impressed at the quality of the video and what a drone can do. It gave me some idea of the scale of the problem down there. Thank you for posting the link.
Lots of Harvey drone footage at various news sites and youtube now, so better than that 2016 video.
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