As is typical after a large scale disaster, a number of rumours have spread online as well as a number of fake images that claim to show the destruction or aftermath caused by Hurricane Harvey.
Here we go through the most popular fake news items and fake images related to Hurricane Harvey.
Houston airport flooded?
The below photo claims to show a photo of the airport in Houston.
It’s not. It is actually from a 2013 projection of what La Guardia airport (in New York) would look like in the year 2100 if sea levels continue to rise. Credit for the artwork goes to Nickolay Lamm.
Sharks along a Houston freeway?
Again, its fake. This shark is often photoshopped into scenes during the aftermath of hurricanes, and has previously been attributed to the floodwaters of Hurricane Irene (2011) and Hurricane Sandy (2012). We discussed this fake photo in more detail in our article here.
Did Black Lives Matter prevent rescue workers?
An image purported to show a crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters preventing rescue workers from saving Texas residents affected by the hurricane.
Wrong! This fake story was published by a known fake news site ourlandofthefree.com (ThatsFake.com listed them as a fake news website.)
The image is a still from a video taken in 2016 in Atlanta showing a protest after a number of police shootings. The crowd were not preventing emergency services or rescue workers from reaching a destination.
Evacuees being asked for immigration papers?
Rumours claimed that those seeking refuge would be asked for immigration papers or status when entering a shelter. These rumours are false and have been dismissed by the official Twitter account form the City of Houston.
The below image apparently shows alligators during Hurricane Harvey.
Alligators are a real threat during floods in Texas – which is why FBCSO Texas Twitter account shared these images along with a warning about displaced ‘gators ahead of the storm. However some social media users including a number of celebrities have falsely claimed they are photos showing alligators from the Hurricane Harvey storm. They’re not – the photos were taken in April 2017.
Corpus Christi turning off utilities?
Online rumours claimed that Corpus Christi were turning off public utilities ahead of the storm, and another rumour claimed the city were preventing residents from returning to their homes to inspect any damage caused.
Obama serving meals?
A series of photos claim to show former president Barack Obama serving meals in Texas directly after the hurricane hit. However these were taken from previous events, including a 2015 charity event. They are not from Texas or show victims of the hurricane.
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Mayweather donated $200 million to Houston?
Rumours that boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr donated a whopping $200 million to Houston in the aftermath of the devastation caused by Harvey are also false, coming from a fake news website that poses at the Houston Chronicle. More information in our post about it here.
A photo of Hurricane Harvey from a cargo ship?
This below photo is spreading across social media that purports to show Hurricane Harvey from a cargo ship.
The photo has been online since around 2005, and as such has nothing to do with the hurricane.
Trump excited tweet?
This tweet isn’t genuine, and was probably created by any number of fake tweet generators.