SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) — As emergency crews are continuing to rescue people stranded on top of their homes in Hays County, city and county officials are getting a better idea of the damage caused by the heavy storms and flooding.
According to the Hays County Emergency Management Coordinator Kharley Smith, as of Sunday morning, 1,000 people are currently being housed at emergency shelters throughout the area. Early estimates indicate 400 homes have been damaged or destroyed — officials expect that number to increase as they continue assessing the damage.
“To start off last nights events, we started receiving reports of a substantial rise in the Blanco River, in Blanco county, around 6:30 in the evening. We were able to notify all the residents who live on the Blanco River throughout Hays county from border to border of the concern of the rise by about 7:30 that evening,” said Smith. “We sent out multiple reverse 9-1-1 calls and emergency notifications.”
For emergency crews, their focus is currently on rescues in Wimberley and San Marcos.
“At this point, it’s mainly an operation of rescue to save those who are stranded,” said Hays County Judge Bert Cobb. “Last night we didn’t have the benefit of helicopters due to the weather but they are out now. If you’re on the roof of your home, let us know you’re there and we’ll get someone to help you.”
While residents are wanting to come back to see their homes, the Mayor of San Marcos is asking people to stay away at this time.
“We are anticipating additional rain in the next 48 hours. As the water recedes, you’ll have the opportunity to assess your home,” said Mayor Daniel Guerrero.Due to the possibility of additional flash flooding and the continuing danger posed by existing conditions within Hays County, the Hays County Judge, in cooperation with the cities of San Marcos and Wimberley, has ordered a curfew beginning May 24 at 9 p.m. and ending May 25 at 7 a.m. for the following areas:
- The City of San Marcos, including its Extraterritorial Jurisdiction
- The City of Wimberley, including its Extraterritorial Jurisdiction
- All Unincorporated Areas of Hays County South of FM150
A water boil notice is in effect for all of Hays county residents on well water until further notice. Water needs to be boiled at 212 degrees Fahrenheit for a total of 1 minute to decontaminate and purify the water. It is very important to do so in case there is/was any accidental contamination introduced into the water supply, due to the recent flooding event.
Hays County is requesting evacuees who are sheltering with friends, relatives and at churches call 512-393-7896 so the County can ensure they are safe and not among the missing. Evacuees who registered at the official shelters at Wimberley High School and the San Marcos Activity Center are already accounted for.