Harvey made landfall as a Category 4 storm with winds of 130 mph around 10 p.m. in the small Texas coastal town of Rockport, located about 30 miles outside of Corpus Christi. It was the first Category 4 hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Hurricane Charley in 2004.
Thousands of people fled their homes on the Gulf Coast to escape the Category 4 Harvey.
Harvey has the "highest potential to kill the most amount of people and cause the most amount of damage," said Brock Long, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Millions of residents along the south Texas coast saw hurricane-force winds that knocked down trees, power poles and signs.
Side by side satellite images compare the size of Hurricane Harvey to Hurricane Katrina in 2005. pic.twitter.com/8LemA9Ju1v— MSNBC (@MSNBC) August 25, 2017
"We’re suggesting if people are going to stay here, mark their arm with a Sharpie pen with their name and Social Security number," Rockport Mayor Pro Tem Patrick Rios told reporters Friday, according to media reports. "We hate to talk about things like that. It's not something we like to do but it’s the reality. People don’t listen."
As many as 6 million people were believed to be in Harvey's path, as is the heart of America's oil refining operations. The storm's impact on refineries has already pushed up gasoline prices while the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency lifted some rules on gasoline to reduce shortages.
The city warned residents of flooding from close to 20 inches (60 cm) of rain over several days.
Louisiana and Texas declared states of disaster, authorizing the use of state resources to prepare.
The NHC's latest tracking model shows the storm sitting southwest of Houston for more than a day, giving the nation's fourth most populous city a double dose of rain and wind.