Coast Guard rescues 18 from boats, barge

Members of the National Guard arrive at Port Aransas after Hurricane Harvey landed in the Coast Bend area on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017, in Port Aransas, Texas. The National Hurricane Center has downgraded Harvey from a Category 1 hurricane to a tropical storm. Harvey came ashore Friday along the Texas Gulf Coast as a Category 4 storm with 130 mph winds, the most powerful hurricane to hit the U.S. in more than a decade. (Gabe Hernandez/Corpus Christi Caller-Times via AP)

A Coast Guard official says helicopters rescued 18 people from boats and barges that were in distress because of Harvey.

Capt. Tony Hahn, commander of the Corpus Christi sector, said Saturday that the two helicopters managed to rescue the people when it became safe enough to do so. He says they retrieved three people from a fishing boat, four from a barge and 11 from two tugboats.

He says several boats sank in the Port of Corpus Christi and there will be a lot of work to do before it can reopen.

Hahn also says that since Corpus Christi is the third largest petrochemical port in the nation, there is the potential for chemical and crude oil spills, so they'll be watching for that.

He says the Port of Brownsville reopened Saturday morning and they haven't yet been able to assess the Port of Victoria.

Harvey came ashore as a Category 4 hurricane Friday night but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm.

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