ETX emergency officials have crews on standby for Hurricane Isaa - | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

ETX emergency officials have crews on standby for Hurricane Isaac impact


Emergency officials across East Texas are watching weather forecasts more closely this week.

"Isaac has been making a westward pass towards New Orleans right now but if it continues west it could affect us more," said Don Morris, Emergency Management Coordinator, Angelina County.

As Isaac targets neighboring Louisiana for landfall, Angelina County officials say they're prepared for the worst.

 Lufkin is no stranger to disaster and Deputy City Manager Keith Wright says an emergency plan is in place for any scenario.

 "We have a lot of experience we went through Ike and Rita which were pretty much direct hits on Lufkin," said Wright.

"If they evacuate in Beaumont, Port Arthur area down there then we will be notified ahead of time and he will start making preparations to put shelter up to accommodate the public," said Morris.

Emergency officials say non-profit organizations like the Salvation Army and the Red Cross are crucial during potential disasters.

"When Katrina hit our population almost doubled simply in shelters and having people in place and ready to help can make a big difference," said  Candyce Wagnon, Service Director, Salvation Army

Right now, officials are monitoring wind speeds. Strong gusts could easily topple trees killed by drought potentially knocking out power.

 "We'll probably put some crews on standby for any type of debris or trees that might fall," said Wright.

 Emergency officials say they have plans in place for any disaster but hope Isaac will continue to track east.

"If we have a hazmat situation we have plans to handle that if we have a tornado come through we can handle that," said Morris.

Isaac's intensity will determine the East Texas response. Until landfall, county and city crews are on standby.

 "We're ready as well as anybody can be," said Wright.

The Salvation Army in Nacogdoches will host a training for their volunteer response team Saturday September 8th from 10:30 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.

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