Metro Detroiters pitch in to help Houston in 500-year flood

- The storm isn't over in Houston but it's already being called a 500-year flood. From across the country, people are pouring in to help the hardest hit communities, including Detroit.

In Taylor, at the emergency services command center at Atlas Oil, they're planning, staging, and sending fuel to emergency crews in Texas. Jeremy Whiddon says fuel is not accessible for workers unless it's brought in from elsewhere.

"It is now at a point where they're calling it a 500-year flood inside Houston, Texas. All of the fuel terminals in Houston, Texas, are actually shut down due to flooding right now - so the local market is inundated with demand and no supply."

Whiddon says Atlas Oil has 35 fuel transport trucks deployed with more to come.

"Bringing trucks of fuel - both gasoline and diesel - to help first responders, FEMA, the National Guard, and private enterprise as well," Whiddon said.

The trucks carry 13,000 gallons of fuel. Once they arrive in Houston, FEMA will take over and send them to their final locations.

Despite the distance, Detroit will likely feel the impacts of the gas shortage. The flooding and damage could eventually impact fuel prices for drivers in Metro Detroit and across the nation, according to Triple A Michigan.

"Estimates are 5 to 10 cents a gallon immediately and we don't know what's going to happen down the line until we know how much damage there is," Gary Bubar with AAA Michigan said.

He says crude oil can't currently be shipped in and it's not yet clear how badly refining facilities have been damaged in the Gulf.

"There could be major changes. I've heard as much as 20 cents a gallon and then couple that with normal Labor Day increase in price and some of the normal maintenance that refineries do during the fall season so there could be major changes and some significant volatility in the next two to four weeks," he said.

In a time of so much uncertainty and so much concern for the people of Texas, many try to bring much needed aid to those in need.

If you want to help, CLICK HERE for a list of ways to pitch in.

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