Houston Co. issues disaster declaration, Tyler Co. residents cut - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Houston Co. issues disaster declaration, Tyler Co. residents cut off by washed-out bridge

Source: Houston County Sheriff's Office Source: Houston County Sheriff's Office
Tyler County flooding (Source: Richard Carnley) Tyler County flooding (Source: Richard Carnley)
Source: Richard Carnley Source: Richard Carnley

Citing infrastructure damage to county roads following last week's rain event, Houston County Judge Erin Ford has issued a disaster declaration.

The declaration is a formal request to the governor's office for assistance in repairing the damage.

The disaster declaration states that it was issued because the county is in "threat of damage, injury, or loss of life or property resulting from conditions created by torrential rainfall over an excessive period of time." It also states that the heavy rains affected Tyler County via flooding in populated areas and m"major infrastructure damage preventing access to or the safe passage on various roadways."

In the letter, Ford said the damage included washed-out areas on roads, damage to numerous culverts and possible bridge damaged. None of the damage is insured.

The state of disaster will expire in seven days. According to to the text of the declaration, it also activates the county emergency management plan.

Tyler County was hard hit as well. Richard Carnley, a Tyler County resident, contacted the East Texas News and said the rains washed out the bridge on Private Road 7261 that leads to their home and those of three other families, two of which are elderly.  He said the road is private because they haven't been able to get the county to take charge of it.

Carnley said none of the families are trapped because someone cleared out a walking path upstream, and people are able to walk in and out with some effort by using a fallen tree. He added that if there is some kind of emergency, there is no access because no one can get vehicles in and out of that road.

Carnley said after he talked to State Rep. James White, he learned that until their part of Tyler is declared a disaster area, they will not get any relief.

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