Chambers County evacuees head to 3 Texas cities

ANAHUAC, Texas (KTRK) -- Leaving ahead of a major hurricane is nothing new for residents of Chambers County, but the COVID-19 pandemic adds a different set of rules as evacuations get underway.

Buses were staged at the Kyle White Stadium parking lot in Anahuac and Winnie Stowell County Park in Winnie on Wednesday, less than 24 hours before Hurricane Laura's anticipated landfall.

The buses are headed to San Antonio, Dallas or Austin once they leave the area. Evacuees won't have a choice of where they're taken, authorities said.

RELATED: Take a look at the evacuation orders issued in your county ahead of Laura

The county issued a voluntary evacuation order specifically targeted at residents whose homes are in low-lying or flood prone areas, or those whose homes have flooded during recent high-rain events. The highest elevation in Chambers County is approximately 50 feet above sea level.

SEE ALSO: Hundreds board buses to leave Lake Charles ahead of Hurricane Laura

Residents who elect to evacuate via bus should note:
  • Transportation to the departure location is not available
  • Due to COVID-19, riders will be spaced out and must follow safety guidelines including wearing a mask
  • Luggage space is limited; each evacuee is permitted to bring one suitcase and one small personal bag
  • Each evacuee is permitted to bring one pet-weighing 30 pounds or less-as long as they are in proper pet carriers
  • Owners are encouraged to bring copies of licenses and/or vet paperwork.
  • These are not medical shelters
  • Those who need assistance with oxygen and can provide their own supplies are permitted to utilize this transportation

Riders are encouraged to find someone to drop them off before boarding the bus. Limited parking space is available, but evacuees who choose to leave their vehicles at the staging sites do so at their own risk.
Residents who are under home quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19 will not be permitted to board buses or enter a shelter.

RELATED: Houstonians urged to stay off roads for people evacuating from Hurricane Laura

All prospective riders will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms prior to boarding.

Buses were scheduled to depart at 8 a.m. Wednesday.

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