HOUSTON (AP) — The Latest on Tropical Depression Harvey (all times local):

7 p.m.

Officials say a 61-year-old Southeast Texas woman has become the 32nd person confirmed to have died in Texas because of Harvey.

Newton County Sheriff Billy Rowles says Clementine Thomas died Wednesday afternoon when the car she was driving was swept from Texas 87 south of Newton, about 60 miles northeast of Beaumont.

In a statement Thursday, Rowles said witnesses reported that several people risked their lives to rescue Thomas but were unsuccessful. Her body was recovered Thursday afternoon.


5:50 p.m.

Law enforcement officials from the federal government and Texas and Louisiana have formed a working group to investigate and prosecute illegal activity related to Hurricane Harvey.

Houston-based Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez says storm victims already have suffered devastation and “the last thing that victims of the damage need is to be victimized again.”

Authorities say bringing about a dozen agencies together into a single focused group is an optimal way to address calls they’re already getting about scams in the wake of Harvey. Those calls are going to relevant agencies.

He says they’re also employing lessons learned from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and will bring “a comprehensive law enforcement focus” against illegal activities.

Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton says there’s no place for fraud or shady practices in rebuilding Texas and Louisiana.___

5:15 p.m.

Local officials in the southeast Texas city of Beaumont struggled to cope after flooding swamped the municipal water system.

The already swollen Neches River rose further as water from more northerly reaches made its way toward the Gulf of Mexico. It led to more rescues by helicopter and boat just like Houston had seen days before, but also to the water system failure. Beaumont’s main water pumps are in the Neches, but by early Thursday morning they were underwater. The backups failed, too.

Kyle Hayes, manager of the city of about 120,000 people, said the flooding is making it hard to send in water and other needed resources. The city was still trying to amass enough water to open water distribution stations. Hayes said one truck had arrived Thursday morning.

Donald Marvels runs Beaumont’s branch of the Salvation Army. He said he gave out at least 1,500 cases of water Thursday. Flooding was causing problems for his convoy of storm responders trying to get to Beaumont.


4:40 p.m.

The head of the Texas agency that regulates the oil and gas industry is urging people to wait three or four days to fill their cars and trucks with gasoline if they can.

Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton said Thursday that people are panicking and that’s causing a run on gas and empty fuel pumps.

He says there is plenty of gas in Houston and elsewhere, but there are logistical problems of making sure all of the stations are getting it.

He says he doesn’t think it will be an issue a week from now as long as people stay calm and fill up their tanks as they normally would.


4:15 p.m.

A health expert warns standing water from Harvey could create a boom in the mosquito population and the potential transmission of mosquito-borne diseases.

Joon Lee is a medical entomologist at the University of North Texas Health Science Center. He says Harvey’s floodwaters will wash away immature mosquito populations from their breeding grounds, but they can be quickly re-established in stagnant water. Lee says mosquito populations will likely explode within the next two weeks and will stay for at least a month or two.

Lee says that could be mean increased transmission of potentially life-threatening, mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile virus and St. Louis encephalitis. Lee says outbreaks of Zika, dengue fever and Chikungunya are also possible, but those diseases must originate from a person already infected.


4:10 p.m.

The Trump administration is trying to assure victims of Harvey living in the country illegally that they will not be targeted as they try to access emergency services — as long as they haven’t committed other crimes.

Trump’s Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert says that: “in terms of immediate lifesaving, no individual human being should worry about their immigration status unless they’ve committed a crime on top of coming here illegally when it comes to getting food, water and shelter.”

He also says that no routine sweeps will be conducted in emergency shelters.

Still, he said that people living in the country illegally should not expect long-term federal assistance reserved for citizens.

He says: “I don’t think there’s going to be a lot of benefits going out to illegal immigrants.”


4 p.m.

A Texas A&M University analysis of floodwater samples from the Houston area shows E. coli levels that are 125 times higher than is considered safe for swimming.

Terry Gentry, an associate professor in the university’s Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, says even walking through floodwater could lead to infections and other problems.

Gentry says tests from a sample in Cypress, a suburb northwest of Houston, showed bacteria levels 15 times higher than acceptable for wading.

E. coli in water isn’t what causes illnesses but is an “indicator bacteria” that signals the presence of fecal matter, which can make people sick.


3:45 p.m.

Filling fuel tanks is becoming increasingly difficult in parts of Texas where some stations were out of gas and pump costs have risen steeply.

In Dallas, lines of cars a block long were common for the few gas stations that had gasoline to sell Thursday. The scene was reminiscent of the gas lines seen during the Arab oil embargo of the 1970s.

One Chevron station in downtown Dallas that sold regular gas for $2.29 a gallon just before the storm was charging $2.99 on Thursday. Others charged well over $3, and one downtown Shell station charged $3.97 for a regular gallon of gas. At three gas stations in north Dallas, yellow bags or caution tape was wrapped around pumps just after noon.

The Texas attorney general’s office said anyone seeing gas prices of $4 or higher should take pictures and report the stations as price-gouging.


3:20 p.m.

The U.S. Postal Service has posted a list of locations where Houston-area residents can pick up government benefit checks after Harvey forced the temporary closing of several post offices.

The list posted Thursday includes pickup site addresses by ZIP code. Government checks including Social Security payments, Department of Veterans Affairs disability benefits and checks from the Office of Personnel Management and the Railroad Retirement Board can be picked up starting Friday. The locations will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Sunday.

The Postal Service says to pick up a check, customers must show proper identification. Customers can also complete a change of address request if they expect to be out of their homes for an extended period.


2:10 p.m.

Houston public schools will start classes two weeks late on Sept. 11 because of Harvey.

The nation’s seventh-largest school district had been scheduled to start classes on Monday until Hurricane Harvey stormed ashore in Southeast Texas, leading to devastating flooding in Houston.

Houston also is the largest public school district in Texas, with about 216,000 students and 283 campuses.


2 p.m.

Officials at Beaumont’s other hospital say they’ve decided not to move their patients elsewhere but are operating under “extreme emergency conditions.”

Christus St. Elizabeth issued a statement Thursday saying 256 patients will remain at the Texas hospital, which gets its water from wells and has a store of potable water.

The statement came hours after Baptist Beaumont Hospital said it was airlifting its nearly 200 patients to other facilities because it no longer had potable water and access was limited by flooding.

The city of about 120,000 people has been hit hard by flooding from Harvey, which came ashore last Friday as a Category 4 hurricane and hovered for days in the region.


1:50 p.m.

The National Weather Service is forecasting flooding in Kentucky and Tennessee as Tropical Depression Harvey travels inland.

Forecasters say the storm is expected to drop 2 inches to 6 inches (50 to 152.4 millimeters) of rain in Kentucky, with the highest totals expected in western Kentucky near the Tennessee border. The heaviest rainfall for a wide swath of the state is expected to start late Thursday and last through Friday afternoon. Forecasters say high winds from the storm could also produce tornadoes.

Some locations in Tennessee could get more than 10 inches (254 millimeters), though most will get 4 inches to 8 inches (101 to 203 millimeters). The say high winds from the storm could also produce tornadoes. The weather service issued a flood warning for areas along several rivers in West Tennessee while a flood watch included the whole region and stretched into Middle Tennessee.

Harvey dumped nearly 52 inches (1321 millimeters)of rain on at least one spot in Texas.. It has caused more than 30 deaths.


1:25 p.m.

The county in Texas that has had the most deaths from Harvey says its morgue is close to capacity because of storm-related bodies and deaths that are not related to the flooding.

Tricia Bentley, spokeswoman for the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences said Thursday that funeral homes have been unable to retrieve the bodies in the aftermath of the storm and it has asked for a large refrigerated 18-wheeler to store more of them.

The county has confirmed 18 storm-related deaths and is investigating 10 more as potentially Harvey-related.

Bentley says the morgue has about 175 bodies total — most of them not related to the storm — and it has a capacity of 200. The agency has requested approval from the state for the tractor-trailer and expects to receive it Friday.

So far, the death toll from Harvey is at least 30.


1:20 p.m.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has declared Sunday a day of prayer for his waterlogged state.

The Republican governor and Vice President Mike Pence visited a church in the city of Rockport on Thursday that was damaged when Harvey came ashore last Friday as a Category 4 hurricane.

Abbott says Texans will pray on Sunday for those affected by the storm and for everyone who has helped them, including first-responders.

Harvey has caused record flooding in parts of the state and has been blamed for the deaths of more than 30 people.


1:10 p.m.

The Harris County Director for FEMA says the federal disaster agency is looking for unique ways to house the tens of thousands of people whose homes were damaged or destroyed by Harvey.

Tom Fargione said Thursday that FEMA hasn’t discounted any ideas because the housing problem is so big.

He says the first priority is getting people out of shelters and into some other form of temporary housing.

FEMA’s use of mobile homes following Hurricane Katrina became an issue after unhealthy formaldehyde emissions were detected in the trailers.

Fargione says the agency has trailers in stock and has ordered more, but that they aren’t necessarily the best solution.

He says people need to register with the agency to start the process of getting federal help.


12:10 p.m.

Beaumont officials say it’s unclear when their Texas city will be able to provide residents with potable water.

City manager Kyle Hayes said during a news conference Thursday that continually rising flood waters on the Neches River are covering pumps that are the primary source for drinking water.

Hayes says city workers won’t be able to check the pumps for any needed repairs until the water recedes.

Beaumont’s backup water source in nearby Hardin County also has failed.

Earlier Thursday, Baptist Beaumont Hospital evacuated nearly 200 patients by air because of the lack of water.

The city plans to get bottled water as soon as possible and make it available to residents.


12 p.m.

The U.S. Border Patrol says it has rescued about 450 people since dispatching vessels to the Houston area on Monday.

John Morris, chief of staff in South Texas, says agents are not enforcing immigration laws and are “absolutely 100 percent here for rescue and safety.”

Morris says the agency had 35 boats navigating flooded streets on Thursday. They were brought from stations that patrol areas along the Rio Grande, which is the busiest corridor for illegal crossings.

The Border Patrol did not suspend highway checkpoints in Texas when the storm moved into parts of the state, drawing criticism from advocates who said lives were being put at risk. The arrival of Border Patrol boats in Houston has put some immigrants on edge, but agency leaders have been emphatic that they are only being used for search and rescue.Read more stories about Harvey here

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