Gov. Greg Abbott directed the Texas State Operations Center to elevate its emergency response status to Level III Friday morning, as severe weather is predicted to impact parts of Texas through Memorial Day weekend.
According to multiple sources, at least two people died and one person is still missing in Washington County when a storm system moving across Texas caused storms, high waters and at least one tornado that prompted evacuations, forced students to spend the night on campus, damaged homes and closed roads and schools Friday. Among the other Texas counties affected by the storm system were Travis County and Hays County.
“Especially as Texans may be traveling to unfamiliar areas or spending time outside during the Memorial Day weekend, we strongly urge everyone to monitor the ongoing severe weather in their areas as storm systems quickly develop,” said Gov. Abbott. “Be aware that conditions may change rapidly, so it is imperative for Texans to heed all warnings from state and local officials. When you encounter rising waters or flooded roadways, keep one simple phrase in mind: turn around, don’t drown,” he said.
Since Thursday state resources have been utilized in areas threatened by severe weather, including prompt water rescue teams and personnel working to close impassable roads.
Monitoring weather conditions is critical as unpredictable weather pattern continues. The forecasts indicate the possibility of severe thunderstorms, flash flooding, dangerous river flooding, hail and strong winds, according to the release from the Office of the Governor.
Texans are encouraged to follow the following guidelines if severe weather occurs: Be indoors; seek shelter in a home, large building or automobile if outdoors; avoid flooded areas and fast-flowing water; never attempt to cross flowing streams or drive across flooded roadways; move to higher ground if encountering flooring; monitor weather broadcasts; and keep in mind that these dangers are even harder to recognize at night.
For additional safety tips, go to dps.texas.gov