Houston’s unprecedented rainfall on Sunday pushed area medical facilities to take precautions — including, in some cases, evacuations — in a bid to protect patients.Texas Medical Center early Sunday began closing its massive “submarine” doors, designed to seal off lower floors — Texas Children’s Hospital, as well as Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and TIRR Memorial Hermann Hospital, deployed the doors, a spokeswoman told the Houston Chronicle.
The system is part of a safety upgrade installed after Tropical Storm Allison devastated the medical campus in 2001, the Chronicle reported. That storm drowned tens of thousands of laboratory animals and forced patient evacuations. Decades of medical research were lost as well.Unrelenting rain is forecast well into the week in Houston and surrounding areas, with the Texas Gulf Coast bracing for days of catastrophic flooding. The National Weather Service on Sunday said some areas could be slammed with an “unprecedented” 50 inches of rain by week’s end.