TxDOT’s inland evacuation map could be a lifesaver in the event of a major hurricane

By Vanesa Brashier, editor@bluebonnetnews.com

Everyone who evacuated the Greater Houston Area during Hurricane Rita remembers the traffic nightmare that was created on the major highways leading north and west. Millions of people loaded up in cars and tried to flee, with many getting stuck on the highway and unable to refuel their vehicles due to fuel outages.

Before the storm even made landfall, an estimated 90 to 118 deaths occurred, some due to the excessive heat and others as a result of gridlock traffic.

The lessons learned by the evacuation for Hurricane Rita led to emergency officials now recommending that most residents shelter in place, with the exception of those in low-lying areas who are most likely to experience flooding during a major hurricane.

Hurricane Harvey, which dropped a record 60 inches of rain during three landfalls as it bounced along the Texas Gulf Coast, proved that even those plans can go awry during a major hurricane. Areas that had not flooded in recent memory flooded.

The Texas Department of Public Safety has prepared the attached evacuation map (posted below), which includes a topography showing the areas most likely to be impacted by storm surge. The green area is Category 1 inundation. Most of Liberty County, except the area to the far south near Chambers County, will fare well during a Category 1.

View the map to see the storm surge categories would impact where you live and what routes are recommended should you choose to evacuate ahead of the next storm that hits Southeast Texas.

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