Situation Update 3
Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management
Hurricane Ike – Situation Update 3
September 13, 2008 – 12 p.m.
Oklahoma Standing by to Assist Those Impacted by Hurricane Ike
State and local officials remain on standby to assist those impacted by Hurricane Ike. The storm made landfall around 2 a.m. today on Galveston Island as a Category 2 Hurricane with 110 mph winds. Ike remains a very large tropical cyclone with hurricane force winds extending outward to 45 miles and tropical storm force winds to 260 miles. Hurricane Ike is expected to bring heavy rainfall to eastern Oklahoma later today.
Texas evacuees in Oklahoma are directed to contact 211 if they need information regarding available assistance. The Oklahoma Department of Transportation (ODOT) has posted signs displaying the 211 message on key travel routes.
Oklahoma has reached out to Texas and stands ready to receive evacuee transport if necessary. The evacuees would be housed at the shelter located in the former Lucent Technology Center, 7725 W. Reno in Oklahoma City. Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM) officials are working directly with City of Oklahoma City officials to support operation of the shelter and deliver necessary resources. The same facility was used following Hurricane Gustav to shelter about 1,800 Louisiana evacuees.
Anyone who suspects price gouging is urged to contact the Oklahoma Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Unit at (405) 521-2029. Oklahoma's price gouging statute is in effect in all 77 counties due to the State of Emergency Gov. Brad Henry declared earlier this week. The price gouging statute prohibits an increase of more than 10 percent in the price of most goods and services when a State of Emergency has been declared. The Attorney General’s Office will investigate any price gouging reports received.
The State of Emergency declaration also paves the way for the state to receive federal disaster assistance to cover expenses should Oklahoma receive evacuees.
Texas -- The center of Category 1 Hurricane Ike is located north of Huntsville, Texas. Movement is toward the north at 18 mph and a turn toward the north-northeast with an increase in forward speed is expected later today. Maximum sustained winds are near 80 mph. A wind gust of 92 mph was reported at Houston Hobby Airport earlier this morning. The National Hurricane Center forecast has Ike in west-central Arkansas by 1 a.m. Sunday and in the nation's northeast region by 1 a.m. Monday.
Oklahoma -- A flash flood watch continues for eastern Oklahoma where Ike is expected to impact the state tonight through early Sunday before turning northeast.
Alfalfa County Emergency Management reports the shelter in Burlington is now closed. On Friday, about 20 residents were evacuated from the area when the levee broke on Turkey Creek.
Fairview officials report an American Red Cross shelter remains open there. The shelter is at the Fairview Municipal Building. Water continues to recede in the area that received nearly 12 inches of rain since Thursday night. Red Cross is providing clean up kits to residents whose homes were flooded. Initial reports show as many as 100 homes may have sustained flood damage.
ODOT reports the following highway closings due to high water. If a highway is not on this list, or has been removed, it is open.
SH-11 from north of Cherokee, extending north, then east to Byron and west to the Woods County line
SH-8 from SH-11 north to the Kansas state line
SH-58 from Byron north to the Kansas state line
US-81 from Medford to the Kansas state line
US-60 from Pond Creek east to the SH-74 junction
US-177 in the city of Blackwell just north of the SH-11 junction
US-60 north of Fairview north to Cleo Springs
US-412 from the US-412/US-281 to Orienta - is anticipated to open by 6 p.m. following debris removal
For road conditions in Texas call (800) 452-9292, in Arkansas call (800) 245-1672, in Missouri call (800) 222-6400 and in Kansas call (866) 511-5368.
Please Do Not Self-Deploy
Oklahomans are discouraged from self-deploying to assist with hurricane response, recovery efforts in Texas. In most cases, access to the affected areas, requires proper credentials and travel documents. As Oklahoma receives requests for personnel, equipment and supplies, OEM will look to local county and municipal emergency managers to identify the needed resources. OEM will work through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC), an interstate mutual aid agreement, to deploy resources to the affected areas.
How Can Oklahomans Help?
Monetary donations are best. A number of the disaster relief agencies Oklahoma always depends on in disaster times are already working to assist those affected by Ike. At the same time those same agencies continue to help those impacted by Hurricane Gustav. Oklahomans are urged to give to the disaster relief agency of their choice, to include the American Red Cross, The Salvation Army and other faith-based organizations. Go to www.okvoad.org for a list of disaster relief organizations.