RICHMOND, Texas (FOX 26) - Fort Bend County Judge Robert Hebert has announced a voluntary evacuation order for certain residents in low-lying areas surrounding the Brazos River and a mandatory evacuation order for certain residents in low-lying areas surrounding the San Bernard River.
The National Weather Service projects a crest at 55 feet for the Brazos River at Richmond and a crest at 34.1 feet for the San Bernard River at Sweeny. Both projections are increases over the 2016 records.
"Harvey has placed us in a familiar position," said Judge Hebert. "Last year's floods showed how quickly the Brazos River can impact lives and property in our County and this powerful storm is threatening many of our residents in the same areas. Therefore, I am issuing a voluntary evacuation for the potentially affected areas along the Brazos and a mandatory evacuation for areas along the San Bernard river."
“Many of our residents want and need somewhere safe to stay locally, so we are also working with the Red Cross in setting up nearby shelters," added Hebert. "I urge all of our residents to work quickly and respond to this call, especially with this break between the rain bands from Harvey. Our heart breaks for our community as we face this danger, but we will take every necessary step for the safety and security of our residents against these incoming floods."
Residents in evacuation zones with no mode of transportation or without a place to go are encouraged to contact 211 by phone and request assistance with the evacuation.
The local American Red Cross is helping establish shelters.
"We are fully prepared to assist local residents with an orderly evacuation by facilitating a safe, comfortable location for this shelter," said American Red Cross spokesman Jeff Stewart. "We urge all residents to heed the evacuation call and stand ready to assist with any difficult needs for our elderly residents. We regret that we cannot offer shelter to pets unless they are service animals - if you wish to make use of the shelters, please make other arrangements for your pets. Our commitment is to provide our community with the highest possible level of assistance during this crisis and we thank all of our volunteers and partners in this effort."