Gov. Abbott prepares state resources as severe weather and torna

Gov. Abbott prepares state resources as severe weather and tornadoes approach Texas

AUSTIN, Texas -

Governor Greg Abbott has placed numerous resources on standby across the state in preparation for an outbreak of severe weather — including a high threat for tornadoes — expected to hit the state today. The Governor has also ordered the Texas State Operations Center (SOC) to Level III (increased readiness) for this weather event, and the state stands ready to assist should this latest severe weather system cause damage across the Lone Star State.

“With severe weather and tornadoes approaching, the state of Texas is taking all necessary precautions to keep Texans safe, including providing local officials with the resources they need during and in the aftermath of these storms,” said Governor Abbott. “This coordinated response between local and state officials will better protect Texans and mitigate any potential damage from severe weather. I strongly encourage all Texans in the storm’s path to pay close attention to weather reports and heed all warnings from local officials.”

In addition to placing multiple aviation assets, boats, and personnel on standby across the state, Governor Abbott today activated elements of Texas Task Force 1 and 2 for rapid deployment to the Texas Panhandle.

The Texas Panhandle, Texas Southern Plains, and North Texas regions are facing the greatest threat for severe weather today, including tornadoes and hail. Several rounds of storms are expected throughout the day and into the evening. Damaging winds are also expected across most of the state today. The SOC is coordinating with the National Weather Service and closely monitoring these storms.

State agencies involved in the emergency response effort include the Texas Department of State Health Services, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Task Force 2, Texas A&M Texas Task Force 1, Texas A&M Forest Service, and Texas Military Department. The following resources are on standby:

  • 8 AMBUSes
  • 8 Ambulance Strike Teams
  • 1 Type 1 Mobile Medical Unit
  • 8 Medical Incident Support Team
  • 3 IMT Short Teams
  • 3 Saw Team
  • 7 Game Wardens
  • 6 Boats
  • 2 Type III USAR Teams
  • 1 Type I USAR Team
  • 4 Boat Teams

Texans are encouraged 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.
  • Dangerous waters can seem deceptively calm and if you encounter flooding, move to higher ground.
  • 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.

For additional safety tips related to thunderstorms and flooding, see: http://dps.texas.gov/dem/ThreatAwareness/weather_aware_severe.htm.

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