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  1. ITV Report

Evacuations continue as Hurricane Harvey fallout spreads to Louisiana

Almost a week after Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas, it has moved on from Houston and is now battering the state's border with Louisiana.

Although the storm is beginning to die out as it pushes deeper inland, it remains powerful enough to cause the evacuation of cities on the Texas/Louisiana border, as well as raising the risk of flooding as far north as Kentucky.

In Texas' eastern cities, Marines are using vehicles built for war zones to help rescue those affected.

Satellite images reveal scale of devastation left in storm Harvey's wake. Credit: 2017 DigitalGlobe

In some areas, whole neighbourhoods have been cut off for days, while entire towns and cities have no water supply.

While the city of Houston is beginning to dry out after 52in (1.32m) of rain in five days, getting it back to normal will "take a long time", one rescue worker explained.

"What I've seen so far is nasty," Luke Williams said.

"It's going to take a long time and a lot of hard work, but the good news is that we're America and that's what we do."

Rescue worker Luke Williams described the aftermath as 'nasty'. Credit: ITV News

It is estimated that the city's long-term recovery will take years and billions of pounds.

As rescue operations continue in the US's fourth-largest city, Houston's mayor has issued an appeal for more high-water vehicles and more search-and-rescue equipment as street-by-street searches for both survivors and the dead.

Sylvester Turner also asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide more workers to process applications from thousands of people seeking government help.

Harvey victims expect the FEMA to work "with the greatest degree of urgency", Mr Turner added.

The mayor said he will request a preliminary financial aid package of £58 million for debris removal alone.

A person is winched to safety by a rescue helicopter. Credit: ITV News

In the city of Beaumont close to the state's border with Louisiana, before it was evacuated due to flood-fears, people were being given medical treatment in a civic centre, albeit one with no running water and little medicine.

Harvey has moved on from Texas and is now battering Louisiana, with 1,500 people currently in shelters, a number expected to rise as evacuations continue.

The state opened a seventh shelter on Friday in Shreveport for up to 2,400 people, said Shauna Sanford, a spokeswoman for Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards.

Some 325,000 people have already sought government emergency aid in the wake of Harvey, with more than £44 million already paid out.

In Texas alone, 32,000 people remain in shelters, and while some people have begun returning to their homes, others desperately require temporary housing.

As the rescue operations continue, authorities continue to monitor a flooded chemical plant close to Houston after two explosions ripped through it on Thursday, sending up plumes of acrid black smoke which stung the eyes and lungs.

Explosions were reported at the Arkema chemical plant. Credit: AP

The blasts at the Arkema plant, around 25m (40km) north-east of the Texan city, send flames shooting up to 40ft in the air.

A loss of power at the plant is The explosions happened as officials struggle to tackle devastation left in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, as several days of unrelenting rain finally began to recede.

The plant's owners warned more explosions could follow, since a loss of power at the plant had stopped the refrigeration system for chemicals storied there, causing them to degrade and burn.

The death toll from Harvey stands at 39, while 136,000 buildings or 10 percent of all structures in Harris County - which includes Houston - were reported to have been flooded.

While Harvey initially came ashore as a Category 4 hurricane on August 25, before going back out to sea and being downgraded to a tropical storm, there are fears its aftermath could prove just as damaging.