Wichita Falls, Texas - Wichita Falls city leaders held a press conference at the Emergency Operation Center Wednesday evening in order to educate residents about the disaster plan, a plan that was put in action after Wichita County Judge Woody Gossum declared Wichita County a disaster zone.
According to officials, The Disaster Declaration authorizes the imposition of controls on activities, possible evacuations and limiting travel to and from disaster areas. The imposition of such controls would be made in the effort to protect lives and property in the wake of the flooding.
At the conference, Wichita Falls Fire Chief Jon Reese stated that a mandatory evacuation will be issued at 6 p.m. Thursday evening for the affected areas in the City of Wichita Falls.
"We anticipate the peak to be at 9 o' clock on Friday, " said Reese. "One thing that we want to urge residents is that we're going to be proactive in this."
Wichita County Sheriff David Duke urged county residents, especially those located in the Wrangler's Retreat area and the Horseshoe Bend area, to begin to make preparations to evacuate.
"Please understand that this is not 'it might happen,' it is going to happen," said Duke.
Officials also reminded people to not drive through the flood waters.
"We have brought on additional police officers that will be working in the affected are to make sure that your homes are protected while you're away from it," said Borrego.
Officials state when making evacuation preparations, they should include:
- Gathering all medications.
- Making plans for housing all pets (remember their medication and special diet foods).
-. Preparing the contents of your home: raising items, electronics, hazardous materials (paint, solvents, cleaning supplies), important papers to a level well above the level the water may have reached in 2007.
- Disconnecting electrical appliances.
- Securing a copy of your insurance policies and other important documents.
The City of Wichita Falls has also released a map of the 2007 flood, indicating the areas that are expected to be affected during the current event.
You can find the maps here:
Iowa Park Road
Officials say they are most concerned about the houses shaded in purple.
For more additional information, residents are urged to call (940) 761-7909.