Flooding causes major issues in Deep East Texas

Updated: May. 17, 2021 at 6:46 PM CDT
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JASPER COUNTY, Texas (KTRE) - Rising floodwaters created issues for parts of Deep East Texas on Monday.

“I got up about 6:30 this morning as usual,” Jasper County resident Whitney Fountain said. “My husband said that we didn’t have a yard. And I come out yeah, we didn’t have a yard.”

That’s because most of Whitney Fountain’s yard was flooded. Her family left their Jasper County home for higher ground before waters started to recede.

“It was flowing heavily from all the way from where the creek runs all the way to the porch,” Fountain said. “Crazy how fast it happened, and the fact that it even happened at all as small as that creek is. On a normal day it’s about six inches deep.”

Across Jasper County, water covered roads closed some major highways like U.S. Highway 96 near Brookeland for hours.

Sandy Creek came out of its banks, flooding a park in the City of Jasper and covering parts of FM 777. Sean Ford and other men stopped to try to guide traffic away before authorities arrived.

“I’ve just seen people drive through here nonstop,” Ford said. “Eighteen-wheelers coming through here risking themselves. I’m just out here trying to keep people alive. I just felt a responsibility to be out here trying to make sure people are safe.”

County Judge Mark Allen signed a disaster declaration earlier today.

“No injuries or deaths at this time,” Allen said. “We do have several businesses and homes that have water damage. We have a lot of situations where we won’t even know what we got until the water recedes.”

The issues were not just in Jasper County. Newton and San Augustine Counties reported flooding and so did Sabine County like on State Highway 87.

Some schools released early Monday.

“We’re urging all of our residents to stay home and not drive around,” Allen said. “If you don’t have to be somewhere for an emergency or because your work requires it, stay home. Our law enforcement is working hard with other first responders. The old saying ‘turn around, don’t drown,’ holds true right now.”

For Fountain and her family, they are still assessing the damage back home tonight but say they are ready to leave if necessary.

“What was important was we got out in time and we were all together in the process,” Fountain said. “All the rest of it can be replaced.”

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