CRS Rescues Emergency Service Providers from Tropical Storm


Carrier Rental Systems needed to rescue emergency service providers from tropical storm.


Carrier Rental Systems provided many emergency solutions, including dehydrating and comfort cooling.


Just five days into the official hurricane season, tropical storm Allison’s surprise development suddenly brought a staggering 35 inches of rain and up to 60 MPH winds to Houston and the Southeast Texas coastal area on June 5th. By the third day of the storm – when reports of 12, 15, and 20-plus inches of rain in one night were common – local weather forecasters had stopped referring to rain accumulation in terms of “inches.” By the end, Allison’s four-day downpour had left many interstate highways, homes, and businesses under several feet of water.

Normally an emergency services provider during hurricanes, the entire Texas Medical Center system suddenly found itself a victim. The center whose 42 member health care institutions include the county’s two trauma facilities was hit with devastating losses. Two and three-story basements were filled with water, and many laboratories, pharmacies, communication rooms, and mechanical rooms were completely submerged.

When Allison hit Houston, Carrier Rental Systems went into action. Early on day five, the Carrier Rental Systems team had fully mobilized. Concentrating on the most critical medical facilities, Carrier Rental Systems had operations in six major hospital facilities in the Texas Medical Center that day. Carrier Rental Systems technicians, salespeople, managers, and support staff from every region joined together, working around the clock to provide equipment for pumping water and drying critical areas. They also worked on several comfort-cooling projects.

Preliminary forecasts estimated damages in excess of $2 billion and that effects from the storm would be felt in Houston for many years. However, for the most critical of Houston’s emergency services, the damages were significantly reduced thanks to the tireless efforts of Carrier Rental Systems.

One of the Texas Medical Center’s major losses occurred when a large central computer/telecommunications room in one of its hospitals flooded, affecting services to twelve other hospitals in the area. In response, Carrier Rental Systems combined a 9000 CFM desiccant dehydrator with a 120-ton fridge drying package not only to dry out the area, but also to keep the heat sensitive equipment operational. Thanks to the Carrier Rental Systems team’s work, the computer/telecommunications system was back up and operational within two days of the flooding.

Another major player in Houston’s emergency response team is a hospital-based air ambulance service called Life Flight. Operating out of Memorial Hermann Hospital, one of the Texas Medical Center’s two trauma centers, Life Flight’s three helicopters can travel up to a 150-mile radius to retrieve critically ill and injured patients. When Memorial Hermann lost power during the storm, Carrier Rental Systems took portables to a new height – providing a 1 ½ ton spot cooler to maintain comfortable working conditions for the crew that worked on top of the 14-story building. The crews, welcoming the relief from the heat and humidity were able to maintain flight ready status.

Throughout the storm, local CBS affiliate KHOU (Channel 11) continued broadcasting emergency information for its viewers. However, even KHOU was not immune to Allison’s wrath. When floodwaters began to flow into the station, employees scrambled to move electronic equipment to dry areas and barricaded the control room from the rising tide.

Carrier Rental Systems created an 80-ton fridge-drying package to dry out the building. This system could run without risking damage to the station’s heat sensitive equipment and the station could continue to operate normally.

Please contact Carrier Rentals for more information about rental equipment and/or solutions.