LUFKIN – Lufkin District supervisors and district leaders met Monday to discuss the 2019 hurricane season forecast and preparations, addressing district actions and responses should a hurricane move inland from the Texas Gulf Coast.
Hurricane season officially began June 1 and will end on November 30. TxDOT urges motorists and residents to prepare now for any weather emergency that might occur during this time. Residents are urged to make a plan that includes:
- How to receive emergency alerts and warnings
- Prepare a shelter-in-place plan and stock up on needed supplies
- Locate the closest evacuation routes
- Make a communication plan for family members in case you are separated during a storm
Motorists are urged to familiarize themselves with evacuation route maps ahead of time. Major evacuation routes leading from the Gulf Coast through East Texas include US 69, US 59 and US 96. These maps can be found attxdot.gov and show detailed areas from Beaumont, Corpus Christi, Houston, Pharr and Yoakum. Also on this page,https://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/division/traffic/safety/weather/hurricane.html, you will find a listing that will link you to other emergency services, agencies, weather forecasts and even live traffic camera feeds.
East Texans are urged to keep an emergency kit of non-perishable foods and bottled water on hand, as well as extra gasoline, batteries, flashlights, candles, and a battery-operated radio in case of a power loss. Motorists are urged to reduce speed, buckle up and stay alert when driving in any inclement weather.
“Early preparation is key to staying safe in a weather event such as a hurricane or tornado,” said Rhonda Oaks, public information officer. “We urge all East Texans to make a plan. As always, TxDOT crews are prepared to work around the clock, if needed, in the on-going effort to keep the traveling public safe.”
Motorists should never attempt to drive around a barricaded roadway into a flooded area. It is illegal to go around TxDOT orange cones or barricades. In the case of local flooding, check TxDOT Lufkin on Twitter for local closures and alerts, TxDOT on Facebook or drivetexas.org for road conditions statewide.
For more information, contact Rhonda.Oaks@txdot.gov or (936) 633-4395.
- Rhonda Oaks is the Public Information Officer for the nine-county Lufkin District of the Texas Department of Transportation. A Lufkin native, she is a graduate of Hudson High School and Angelina College. She has a background in print journalism and worked for many years as a newspaper reporter and a freelance writer. She has received eight Associated Press awards. Her articles have been published in many publications over the past 25 years.