Houston mayor faces criticism for lack of evacuations before Harvey

Some senior citizens were trapped in a nursing home just outside Houston waiting for rescuers to arrive.
1:48 | 08/28/17

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Transcript for Houston mayor faces criticism for lack of evacuations before Harvey
One image from just outside Houston, showing some of the most vulnerable people in insufferable conditions. Residents in a nursing home, in flood water up to their waist. Eva pilgrim on their desperate wait for rescue to arrive. And the controversy over whether Houston officials should have called for evacuations before the storm. Reporter: The picture, heartbreaking. Senior citizens, some in wheelchairs, trapped in the la vita Bella nursing home just outside Houston. One woman seems to be calmly knitting in her recliner as the water rises. With the flood making escape impossible, another woman sent that picture to her son-in-law. She said things are really bad, and she said we really need help right now. We can't wait. Reporter: A few hours later the seniors were rescued by helicopter, an official telling the local paper, "We were airlifting grandmoths and grandfathers." Here, evacuations still under way. An elderly woman with a walker, helped into a truck. A mother clutching her baby in a canoe. They were among the many who did not evacuate. In Houston, the mayor facing criticism for telling residents Friday to stay put. There is no need at this point for people to be thinking about leaving, getting on the road, and putting themselves in greater danger. Reporter: From the governor, the opposite advice. If you have the ability to evacuate and go somewhere else for a little while, it would be good. Reporter: Today the governor refusing to criticize the mayor, saying, "We've moved beyond whether or not there should have been an evacuation or not." You can see the water rescues still happening behind me. This is an area people say typically floods. Once they realized it was bad, the water was too high for them to leave.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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