Texas Military Forces Activated - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

06/27/07

Texas Military Forces Activated

News Release:

Governor Rick Perry has activated Texas Military Forces and deployed state resources to respond to major weather events stretching from the Oklahoma border to the Rio Grande Valley. The governor gave approval for pre-positioning of state resources last week in anticipation of major weather events including torrential rains and flooding throughout the entire state. These areas include Alliance Airport, Austin, Denton, Eastland, Gainesville, San Antonio, Sherman, Waco and Weslaco. The state is providing search and rescue assistance to these communities as requested by local officials.

"The state stands ready to help these communities respond to emergencies and recover from the heavy storms and rains that have saturated the area," said Perry. "We will continue to work with local officials to ensure the safety of all central Texas residents."

Heavy rainfall and severe storms during the past month have left much of central, north and east Texas vulnerable to sustained flooding. Threatening storms are expected to produce additional rain during the next several days in already saturated areas, posing continued danger of flash flooding.

In anticipation of these storms, 150 Texas Military Forces soldiers and 54 high-profile vehicles were deployed to assist with response efforts concerning heavy flooding and other emergencies. Eight swift water rescue teams and five helicopters have also been activated to assist where needed. Additionally, Regional Incident Management Teams from the Texas Forest Service, highway patrol units and air assets from the Texas Department of Public Safety, game wardens from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, response teams from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, and 50 additional high-profile vehicles stand ready for deployment. Voluntary organizations are also prepared to help in the event they are needed to provide mass care support for residents.

"I urge Texans to heed the warnings of their local leaders, and take all possible precautions to stay out of dangerous situations as this severe weather continues," Perry said.

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