City of Nacogdoches getting ready to house Harvey evacuees from Jasper

City of Nacogdoches getting ready to house Harvey evacuees from Jasper
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - An emergency management spokesman for Nacogdoches city and county confirmed Friday afternoon that Nacogdoches is preparing to house evacuees from Jasper County.

"They are point-to-point evacuees, meaning they are leaving a Jasper shelter and coming to a Nacogdoches shelter, said Sgt. Greg Sowell, an emergency management spokesman for the city and county.

Sowell said that he didn't know how many evacuees they should expect, but he added that emergency workers will be ready for the evacuees' arrival sometime this afternoon.

"Due to an electrical transmission line failure, the Jasper shelter has been rendered inoperable, and Emergency Management personnel in Nacogdoches are preparing to accept evacuees late this afternoon," a press release from the City of Nacogdoches Office of Emergency Management stated. "Shelters are opened by the state operations center, as part of an organized, statewide emergency management plan."
The press release stated that the effort in Nacogdoches is specifically for those affected by the transformer line failure in Jasper and will likely keep all Nacogdoches shelters at full capacity.
The primary shelter will be the Nacogdoches County Exposition and Civic Center. When the facility reaches capacity, the City of Nacogdoches Recreation Center and Library will be available for overflow and not open for normal operation, the press release stated.
"There are also numerous churches in the community waiting to activate their facilities should more overflow be necessary," the press release stated.
"Emergency Management personnel have explicitly asked for no material donations at this time," the press release stated. "This is to prevent excess supplies until needs can be determined and logistics can be managed appropriately. Those wishing to volunteer may register online with the Red Cross at:"
The press release also stated that people who feel the need to donate items to help Harvey victims should take advantage of the effort being spearheaded by Drewery Construction. The company, which is located at 902 SE  Stallings Drive in Nacogdoches, is sending truckloads of supplies to affected areas. The press release stated that the company is operating 24 hours a day.
The City of Nacogdoches Animal Shelter is also preparing to accept animals from Jasper, should any arrive this afternoon," the press release stated. "The animals will be housed at the Nacogdoches County Exposition and Civic Center."

Any questions should be directed to the City of Nacogdoches Office of Emergency Management phone bank at (936) 559-2651 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Ricky Conner, Angelina County's emergency management coordinator, said they will start taking evacuees after the Nacogdoches shelters fill up. He said Nacogdoches will be able to shelter about 750 people, and then Angelina County would start to shelter evacuees.

Emergency management personnel in Angelina County were told to expect a total of about 1,000 people from Jasper County. The evacuees are coming from Jasper County shelters that don't have electricity right now, Conner said.

"If Lufkin shelters are activated, it will be to accommodate overflow from Nacogdoches shelters. The Nacogdoches shelters are housing Jasper County evacuees due to no power in their area," said Jessica Pebsworth, a spokeswoman for the Police Department. "These would be previously registered, state-evacuated individuals. These shelters would not be able to accept 'walk-up' registrants and there would be no registration site locally."

Pebsworth said at this time, the City of Lufkin is housing 500 National Guard personnel at the Pitser Garrison Convention Center at the state's request.
"If you see an abundance of military vehicles in town, there is no cause for alarm," Pebsworth said. "Please help us make them feel welcome."

Conner said they have already identified which shelters they plan to use, but he added they're not going to say which locations they are to use at this time.

Pebsworth also addressed the rumors going around town about fuel shortages.

"There may be isolated incidents of this along heavily traveled highways (evacuation routes), but fuel seems to be available at most stations in town," Pebsworth said.

Copyright 2017 KTRE. All rights reserved.