Caldwell County prepares for rare tropical storm

Caldwell County setting out road barricades ahead of storm. (KXAN photo)

LOCKHART, Texas (KXAN) — There aren’t any palm trees or an ocean for 150 miles, but Caldwell County has been placed under a rare tropical storm warning. First responders and emergency personnel say they are preparing for the worst.

“I personally haven’t seen a tropical storm warning covering the county I’ve worked in before. It’s definitely a new perspective,” said Mid-County Fire Rescue Chief Edward Hanna.

Caldwell County knows floods—it’s been declared a federal disaster area three times in the past two years. Officials say they are actively watching the weather models to make sure they are as prepared for the storm as possible.

“We’re really looking at an aerial flood event. All areas of the county are subject to this flash flooding,” said Caldwell County Emergency Management Coordinator Martin Ritchey.

At local stores in Lockhart, people are stocking up and preparing for Harvey.

“I had to pick up my generator from my mother’s house and we are just headed back to the house now,” said shopper Sherman Crayton. Crayton tells KXAN he is just passing through Lockhart, where he’s heading he may need those supplies more than he thinks.

“Once we get out to Corpus, 90 percent of the water is going to be gone,” said Crayton.

Crayton and his family live in Corpus Christi, he plans to get home to his pets and ride out the storm. “It’s just like any other storm I guess, if it gets too bad I’m going to hop in the car and drive off and go to higher ground I guess and be done.”

Unlike those who live along the coast, Caldwell County officials say be prepared before the rain comes, then ride it out safe in your own home.

“Some of the models are showing a great deal of precipitation so we have to be cautious, that’s why we are recommending people stay home, ride out the storm at home, don’t go out and become part of the problem,” said Ritchey.

“One foot of water going across the roadway is enough to sweep your car away, it’s enough to trap you,” said Hanna. “Don’t go over low water crossings no matter how calm or shallow they seem, stay out of the water.”

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