Harris County officials to residents: Don't evacuate yet

While Harris County's forecast in relation to Hurricane Harvey calls for heavy rain similar to Tropical Storm Allison, emergency management officials say it is not quite time to evacuate yet.

The sentiment is being expressed Friday as Hurricane Harvey is about to make landfall as a Category 2 storm or greater in the central Texas coast.

With forecasts calling for Harvey to linger over Southeast Texas for as many as five days, crews with the county and the city of Houston have worked to clear out storm drains and set up barricades at common high-water spots. In addition, the Harris County Office of Emergency Management advises residents to get off the road, get home and stay there once they have completed their to-do lists.

Evacuating without a voluntary or mandatory order, they said, could have a major impact and could cause a mess on the roads.

"There are mandatory evacuations in place to areas to our south in Brazoria County and in Matagorda County and further down the coast. Those residents need to have open freeways to evacuate through our area," said Jeff Lindner, with the county's Flood Control District and the Office of Emergency Management. "We do not need people inland evacuating the coast. We don't even need people in the Harris County portion evacuating the coast. We are not going to have that significant of a storm surge in Galveston Bay that you need to leave."

From ABC 13