New York, NY (August 30, 2017)—Southeast Texas and Houston have been flooded by Hurricane Harvey, which has made landfall over the region multiple times since last Friday, dumping 50-plus inches of rain in the process. 22 people in the region have died from the flooding, and more than 13,000 people had to be rescued, according to the AP. Given the historic conditions, it’s no surprise that Houston’s pro audio community has been heavily affected.
“Some of the clients we take care of, they’ve lost everything—homes, cars, gear, everything,” said Mike Davis, owner of regional audio provider Texas Live Sound, speaking Tuesday. “We’re all just trapped. None of the freeways are passable—there’s no way in, no way out right now, so we’re just waiting. The airports are closed, there’s one or two grocery stores in our neighborhood that are open but there’s lines around the block.”
While Texas Live Sound’s 1,500-square-foot warehouse in the Houston Heights was unaffected, others were not so fortunate. “We’ve got a small, tight-knit community here with audio owners,” said Davis. “A friend of mine [who owns] Prestige Audio, he’s across the freeway from us, a mile from my warehouse and he took on water so I met him at my warehouse and he tossed everything of his in there and parked his trailer out front.”
Also aiming to support the local audio community is the Houston branch of the national production company VER, which posted on Facebook Tuesday that all its Houston employees were safe and accounted for, adding, “If anyone has any damaged equipment or are concerned about gear availability for an upcoming project please reach out to us. We’re here to support the community.”
Elsewhere in Houston, major production services/systems integrator LD Systems was also affected, posting on its Facebook page, “…we are continuing to ride out the severe weather conditions here in Houston. LD Systems is operational at this time with partial office closure for our Houston location only. We are working collectively to gather information for all of the LD Systems Team affected by the weather…. We have an amazing community in Houston and we are all working together. Thank you for supporting our Houston residents and all other Texas residents in need.”
Houston-based power distribution, conditioning and control equipment manufacturer Juice Goose has survived Harvey, with its employees safe and its headquarters undamaged, but vice president Peter Cook said in a statement, “Problems in the surrounding community continue and are impacting us directly and indirectly. Issues we must address include the needs of families and neighbors, the operations of our vendors and basic transportation via UPS and other carriers. Slowly but most certainly, these are being resolved. I am optimistic that normal business operations will resume for Juice Goose early next week. In the meantime, the office is open and we are working in every available manner to provide…service and support….”
While Harvey has started heading north towards Louisiana, Houston’s travails are not over, as runoff from the oversaturated ground continues to accumulate. “This water is going to continue to rise for a few days before it starts to go down,” said Davis. “We won’t have any rain, but we’ll be feeling the effects of this for a while.”
Video of Interstate 610 & Market St, Houston, TX. Photo: Jeffrey Dan/360 Recording Studio