Emergency preparations on standby as Deep East Texas readies for possible tropical downpours

Emergency preparations on standby as Deep East Texas readies for possible tropical downpours

(KTRE) - Texas Governor Greg Abbott on Wednesday issued an activation order for increased readiness ahead of potential flash flooding and severe weather on the Texas coastline, including several counties in Deep East Texas.

Chief Meteorologist Brad Hlozek has said Jasper, Newton, Polk, Trinity, and Tyler counties were among the areas in southeast Texas which could be most impacted by the remnants of a tropical disturbance that moved in from the Gulf of Mexico. As the system drifts northward, it will continue to push deep tropical moisture over Deep East Texas.

“We’re just monitoring the weather right now. South of us has been hit pretty hard; I believe they’ve got more than 10 inches in the Houston area,” said Ricky Conner, emergency management coordinator for Angelina County.

Conner said seeing as Angelina County wasn’t named in one of the counties expecting flash flooding, his office would stay in close contact with Red Cross and be on standby should his East Texas neighbors need any assistance.

“It’s been the worst year for flooding that I’ve seen in several years. It’s kind of normal this time of year to have a lot of pop-up showers,” Conner said. “We’ll just be more alert about the situations.”

Conner said it doesn’t appear as though any East Texas county would need assistance, and added that the governor’s activation order would help primarily cities along the southern coast.

Resources deployed in Abbott’s activation order include five swift water rescue boat squads and one Texas Task Force One high profile vehicle. These resources will be deployed to the Rio Grande Valley and the Galveston area to support government partners, while remaining boat squads will be held in College Station for deployment as needed.

"The state of Texas is taking action to ensure the safety of communities across the coast, and remains at the ready to provide any additional resources that might be needed," said Governor Abbott. "I urge all Texans to heed the direction of local officials and closely monitor the weather conditions in their communities."

The governor’s office urged Texans to follow these safety tips:

  • When severe storms threaten, the safest place to be is indoors.
  • Avoid areas already flooded and avoid any fast-flowing water.
  • Be extremely cautious of any water on roads or in creeks, streams, storm drains or other areas – never attempt to cross flowing streams or drive across flooded roadways and always observe road barricades placed for your protection. Remember, Turn Around Don’t Drown (http://www.nws.noaa.gov/os/water/tadd/).
  • Dangerous waters can seem deceptively calm, and if you encounter flooding, move to higher ground.
  • Heed all warnings from local officials.
  • Keep in mind that flood dangers are even harder to recognize at night.
  • Stay informed by monitoring weather radios and news broadcasts for updated information on current and anticipated severe weather in your area.

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