The devastating impacts of Hurricane Harvey can be seen in Texas. Photo: Texas Military Department
Environment | National

Tribes face evacuation and floods as Harvey lingers in Texas and hits Louisiana





Tribes in Texas and Louisiana are dealing with the devastating effects of Harvey as President Donald Trump heads to the region to see the destruction.

The Alabama-Coushatta Tribe is under a flash flood warning, according to the National Weather Service Houston/Galveston in Texas. Some roads on the reservation have become impassable, according to posts on Facebook, and the tribal offices remain closed for a second day in a row.

"We have been hit by plenty of rain and more is expected today and tomorrow. People don't try to travel Poncho road it is about to be washed out in several areas," Carlos Bullock, a citizen who serves as the tribe's communications and media relations manager, wrote on Facebook on Monday morning.

The tribe canceled a softball tournament scheduled for this weekend due to weather conditions, Bullock said. Naskila Gaming, the tribe's Class II casino, remains open although with "diminished staffing," according to a post on Facebook.

We have been hit by plenty of rain and more is expected today and tomorrow. People don't try to travel Poncho road it is about to be washed out in several areas. Stay safe.

Posted by Carlos Bullock on Monday, August 28, 2017
Carlos Bullock on Facebook: 'We have been hit by plenty of rain'

The Alabama-Coushatta Reservation is about 110 miles, driving distance, northeast of Houston, which has seen unprecedented levels of rain and devastating floods since Harvey made landfall as a hurricane last Friday. Some tribal citizens live in the city, the state's most populous, and many live in the region in between the city and the reservation, an area that has been hit hard by what is now classified as a tropical storm.

Harvey also began creeping into Louisiana on Monday night. According to The Associated Press, the Louisiana Army National Guard has helped some citizens of the Coushatta Tribe evacuate the reservation as rain and flooding hits the state.

The tribe has dealt with hurricanes in the past and has welcomed evacuates to its reservation, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The reservation is about 40 miles northeast of Lake Charles, where tornado and flood watches have been issued, the AP reported.

Trump already issued a disaster declaration for Texas and approved an emergency declaration for Lousiana. Under an amendment to the Stafford Act, tribes are eligible for similar declarations if they request and qualify for them.

Trump and First Lady Melanie Trump are expected to land in Texas later on Tuesday, Vice President Mike Pence said in an interview with KHOU-Houston. He said FEMA will likely be providing assistance in Texas for years

Read More on the Story:
Louisiana braces for Harvey's wrath 12 years after Katrina (The Associated Press August 29, 2017)
Harvey: Tornado, flood watches issued for Lake Charles, southwest Louisiana (The Associated Press August 28, 2017)