2013 Flood in South Austin

I knew it was raining heavily on my side of town Wednesday night/early morning Thursday. But I had no idea how bad the damage was until I woke up and heard about evacuations by the nearby Onion Creek. Fewer than 3 miles from me, homes were being flooded by Onion Creek.

This flash flood must have been terrifying along Onion Creek. It rained over 9 inches in this area, and all in just a few hours.  Reports are that homes were very quickly overtaken by water. These flash floods move fast.

Today I went down Old San Antonio Road under the assumption that the tiny one lane bridge would have had the most damage in the area.

Old San Antonio Road at the bridge over Onion Creek
Old San Antonio Road at the bridge over Onion Creek
Tree on Old San Antonio Road bridge.
Tree on Old San Antonio Road bridge.

Some of the asphalt was torn clear off the road. I talked with one of the city employees out there, and he told me it would be “a while” before the bridge could be repaired. The asphalt factories are in the southeast part of town and were totally flooded. He heard that that the factories would be back up running some time next week.

I drove north on Old San Antonio Road to see what the damage was like there. It was fairly insignificant. You could tell that some trees had to be removed from the road.

Flood gauge on Old San Antonio Road north of Onion Creek by Southpark Meadows.
Flood gauge on Old San Antonio Road north of Onion Creek by Southpark Meadows.

The most significant damage was near was on Twin Creeks Road. That bridge will surely be out of commission for weeks.

Bridge over Bear Creek and Onion Creek.
Bridge over Bear Creek and Onion Creek.

The nearby homes looked untouched from the back. But as soon as I had rounded the corner, the flood damage was immediately apparent. The residents were airing out what they could salvage after the muck and water ran through their homes.

Garage door torn off home near Onion Creek.
Garage door torn off home near Onion Creek.

Adding insult to injury, the floods on the south side of Austin will do nothing to replenish the drought-stricken lakes which the city draws its water supply from.

The force of Onion Creek pushed all the neighbors' sheds together.
The force of Onion Creek pushed all the neighbors’ sheds together.

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