Lubbock could be hosting as many as 1,000 evacuees as early as Wednesday. The state of Texas is asking West Texas cities to prepare for people escaping from Hurricane Ike.
With Ike inching closer to the Gulf Coast each day, the state of Texas is calling on Lubbock to be ready for evacuees. "The state is asking some of the western cities of Texas to house some evacuees from south Texas along the southeast coast," said Lubbock Emergency Management Director Kevin Overstreet.
Up to 1,000 evacuees could soon be flown into Lubbock. "We can't put 1,000 people in the Coliseum, we have it set up for 500 folks right now, but we are going to have to set up a second operation in Civic Center and we are starting to work on that today (Tuesday) to set up another 500 cots," said Overstreet.
At Monday's emergency city council meeting, the council voted in favor of spending up to a half a million dollars on helping with evacuations. The city fully expects to get reimbursed by the federal government.
"That's one of the reasons we have to do the proclamation in front of city council and that's another reason the governor's office has done the proclamation as well and we were listed in the governor's proclamation when he declared the disaster yesterday morning so there is a lot of things that have to be in place for the reimbursement to take place," said Overstreet.
The South Plains Regional chapter of the American Red Cross has about 200 volunteers right now. "Anybody that's out there that wants to serve and help others, we will take you we will put you to use," said Meghan Graham with the Red Cross.
Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and go through a background check. If you would like to help, call the Red Cross at 765-8534.
Volunteers Needed During Hurricane Ike Evacuee Operation
The city is making emergency preparations for hurricane evacuees, and volunteers are needed quickly.