By Katy Galimberti, AccuWeather staff writer
September 1,2017, 9:14:40AM,EDT
Hurricane Harvey devastated parts of the south-central United States this week, killing at least 30 and leaving catastrophic flooding in its wake.Harvey was the first major hurricane (Category 3 or higher) to make landfall in the U.S. since Wilma in 2005.
Houston and surrounding areas were left under high water, turning freeways into rivers and forcing more than 30,000 people to evacuate their homes in search of emergency shelter.
Many shelters swelled to capacity as hundreds of thousands of displaced people sought help following the storm. Water damage, mold and disease-ridden water could render parts of Houston uninhabitable for weeks and possibly months.
Hundreds of thousands were without power during the immediate aftermath. The storm and resulting rainfall proved catastrophic and will likely be "the worst natural disaster in American history," according to Dr. Joel N. Myers, AccuWeather's founder, president and chairman.
More than 325,000 people have signed up for disaster assistance, FEMA administrator Brock Long said.
The storm continued to drop flooding rain and spawn tornadoes as it progressed north and eastward. Inches of rain fell in parts of Tennessee and Kentucky, leading to multiple water rescues late in the week.
Monsoon rains resulted in the deaths of two dozen people from Mumbai to Karachi this week.
Downpours led to an inch of rain (26 mm) in Karachi in a span of 24 hours. The city typically averages 0.59 of an inch of rain (15 mm) throughout all of August.
The rain likely weakened the structure of a building in Mumbai, forcing it to collapse with dozens inside. At least 16 people were killed.
How to help: Donate to assist Harvey victims reeling from the storm's catastrophic destruction
Labor Day forecast: Storms to rattle Midwest, Gulf Coast; West to bake under record heat
AccuWeather predicts Hurricane Harvey to be more costly than Katrina, Sandy combined
How does Harvey measure up to Hurricane Katrina, other US flooding catastrophes?
Heat baked Southern California this week with temperatures hitting the 100-degree-Fahrenheit mark on Thursday in Los Angeles. In downtown Los Angeles, August high temperatures rarely stray out of the mid-80s.
Western wildfires continue to rage amid the hot conditions. A fire briefly blocked the main route to Burning Man festival in Black Rock Desert, north of Reno, Nevada.
High-voltage electric transmission lines were damaged in the fire, according to USA Today.