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Death toll begins as FEMA says Harvey damage will take years of recovery

The storm touched down just days ago in Texas but FEMA is anticipating years of recovery efforts.
(Image via FEMA)
(Image via FEMA)

At least five people died as of Sunday morning while Tropical Storm Harvey pummels Texas with torrential rains and winds gusting up to 130 m.p.h.

The storm touched down just before 10 p.m. Friday as a Category 4 hurricane, moving into the state near Corpus Christi. So far, heavy flooding, massive power outages, destroyed homes and toppled trees have been reported. While Harvey is now a tropical storm, authorities reported that upwards of 1,000 people had to be rescued as flood waters rose from Saturday night into Sunday.

While Harvey's only been on land for mere days, the head of FEMA has announced that the agency may be engaging in recovery efforts spanning years. "This disaster is going to be a landmark event," said agency administrator Brock Long to CNN. FEMA has assured the public it's prepared to handle the ongoing damage and is urging locals to stay safe.

The National Weather Service has also taken to social media to warn those in Harvey’s path with the hashtag #TurnAroundDontDrown.

However, the storm isn’t just a challenge for Texans; it’s also the first significant natural disaster the Trump administration has had to face. The president tweeted early Saturday that he’d be watching closely and would be “leaving nothing to chance.”