County officials are urging residents to be patient throughout the storm debris removal process in the weeks ahead. Contractors have removed about 15 percent of debris so far from outside homes in Harris County Precinct 4, said David Riddle, government affairs director for the office of Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle.
Riddle shared several updates about flood recovery with those gathered at the Houston Northwest Chamber of Commerce’s monthly Government Affairs forum on Wednesday morning at Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital on Hwy. 249.
“Just in this northwest part [of Harris County], we had close to 12,000 homes that were flooded that we know as of now,” Riddle said. “Some of those are within the flood plain; some are not within the flood plain.”
Commissioner Cagle was among those who sustained flood damage to their home, Riddle said.
“No one was immune to this storm,” he said.
Riddle said the county is requesting patience from residents affected by the storm.
“We have a contract with somebody that in case of storm damage, these folks will come and pick up stuff,” he said. “This contract wasn’t to the size and scope of the storm that actually impacted us so that contract had to be increased and a ramp-up of resources in order to fulfill the needs.”
Contractors are making the first pass through the area, which will take about six weeks. A total of three passes will be made to pick up all of the curbside debris in the precinct, he said.
At the Spring Klein Chamber of Commerce’s monthly Coffee with a Cop gathering Wednesday morning at a McDonald’s restaurant on FM 2920, Precinct 4 Capt. Ronnie Glaze said residents should be aware of scam artists coming to homes where debris piles are visible. The imposters tell homeowners they were contracted by FEMA to remove the debris, charge homeowners thousands of dollars and tell them FEMA will reimburse them, Glaze said.
Riddle said residents can call the Harris County Community Assistance Department at 281-353-8424 for information about buyouts, storm debris removal or other topics relating to flood recovery.
Residents can facilitate pickup by following county guidelines for sorting and placement of debris.