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Victims of Harvey return to clean up their water-damaged homes

Tattered flags fly over a pile of water-soaked items as people clean up in a flood ravaged neighborhood Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017, in Houston. The city continues to recover from record flooding caused by Harvey. (Photo: Charlie Riedel/AP)

Victims of Harvey return to clean up their water-damaged homes

As water levels receded and search teams began checking abandoned homes for victims, Houston began a grim cleanup on Thursday and businesses began to reopen for the first time since Hurricane Harvey hit last weekend.

Previously flooded streets were lined with water-damaged furniture and roads filled with vehicles as residents went hunting for cleaning supplies, insurance estimates and repair help.

“It’s a bit overwhelming,” said John Becker as he salvaged personal items and hauled water-logged sheetrock from his home amid the hum of dehumidifiers and fans. Water that had reached 8 inches (20 cm) inside had ebbed. “We have flood insurance; we’ll do the best of it.”

See: How to help victims of Harvey >>>

Record rains and flooding from Harvey spread misery across a broad swath of the Houston metropolitan area of about 6.5 million people. Thursday brought a sense of it coming slowly back to life, however, with the city’s airports all operating again and the resumption of at least some public transportation services. (Reuters)
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