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As waters rise in Texas, Harvey leads to flood of fake photos online

U.S. Coast Guard chopper flies over flooded Houston and makes rescues

Watch video footage provided by the U.S. Coast Guard that shows parts of the Houston area flooded and also rescues made by the chopper crew.
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Watch video footage provided by the U.S. Coast Guard that shows parts of the Houston area flooded and also rescues made by the chopper crew.

Whenever an event becomes as widely talked about and shared as Hurricane Harvey has, fake photos are almost certain to follow.

Despite the many accurate photos highlighting the perilous conditions in Houston and other parts of Texas as the powerful storm smashes the Gulf Coast, some are doctored.

Two of the most popular fake photos are of a shark apparently swimming along a flooded Houston freeway and an alligator apparently at somebody’s doorstep in a Houston neighborhood.

The Washington Post on Monday published a list of fake Harvey-related photos on its website. Fact-checking website Snopes also has a list of manufactured Harvey social media pictures.

Well-known journalist and author Katie Couric tweeted out the debunked alligator photo to her 1.8 million followers on Sunday, though she later appeared to realize the image didn’t have anything to do with Hurricane Harvey.

The shark photo actually is a composite, Snopes reports, of two completely different shots. The gator picture actually did happen in Houston, the website said, though it was taken earlier this year, well before Hurricane Harvey.

Another fake photo that was being widely circulated was of underwater planes at the Houston airport. Yet another was of President Obama serving food to flood victims.

Bryan Horwath: 316-269-6708, @bryan_horwath

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