Hurricane Preparations

by:  Brad Hlozek

With Hurricane Season just over a week away, Emergency Workers around East Texas are preparing just in case a storm strikes the upper Texas coast.

"We have 50% of the state's population living along the coastline in Texas.  So anytime you have a mass of people on the coastline, you'r trying to move out," says Nacogdoches County Judge Joe English.

One of the biggest improvements will be speeding up the flow of traffic during evacuations.  Ever since the traffic nightmares with Rita, Contra Flow has been established.  This allows traffic to flow northbound on all traffic lanes on major highways, such as Highway 59 out of Houston and Highway 69 out of Beaumont.

Another area of concern was making sure that there was enough supply of gas for motorists so they don't become stranded on area roadways.

To solve this problem, tanker trucks will now be sent to certain gas stations that are void to the public.  By tracking the supply of gas, emergency officials can now supply gas at certain locations ahead of time to keep motorists from being stranded.

With the recent plans and improvements from local and state officials, we have made strides in Hurricane preparation.

Joe English feels like the recent conferences and communication between state and county officials will go along way in making things much smoother in the future.  "I feel like we're much better prepared now then what we were during the last hurricane season."  Atleast we hope so.  After all, the next Atlantic named storm could be in the Gulf before we know it.