Office of Emergency Management adds “new” vehicle

15 10 2011

Well, not exactly a brand-new vehicle, but a vehicle that is new to Fort Bend County Office of Emergency Management staff.  Though a new vehicle purchase was not possible given the overall budget demands of the County, OEM is happy with its recently received 2001 Crown Victoria that was formerly used by the County’s Road & Bridge Department and also the County’s Purchasing Department. 

Fort Bend County OEM 2001 Crown Victoria

More Rain Could Wreak Havoc on Fort Bend County Roads

11 10 2011

Well, the good news is that we finally got a good soaking rain over the weekend in Fort Bend County. Around two inches fell across the County, and reportedly over five inches fell out in the Needville area.  This is was first significant rain in our area since January of this year.  The KBDI level dropped significantly— to a level under 600.  Definitely a needed respite from the 100 degree temperatures that the drought conditions that we have experienced for the last six or seven months.

On the other hand, it seems that the rain that we all wished for is causing some serious problems for our roadways.  Over the last couple of days, Sally MacDonald, myFOXHouston, has reported on the effect the recent rain has had on our County’s rural roads.  She reported on October 10th and 11th:

After our weekend rain, there are new concerns about area roads damaged by months of drought, but the full impact won’t be known for years. How bad the ground shifts all depends on what the weather does in coming months. 

It’s a smooth ride now, but right around the corner rural, asphalt roads in Fort Bend County are splitting wide open.   The cracks are happening faster than Marc Grant’s crews can make it out to repair them. 

“I’d say a minimum of 30% of our roads are in disarray right now,” said Grant, Fort Bend County Road Commissioner. 

Grant says drivers aren’t in danger. 

Homeowner Terence Romney acknowledges, though, that some of the larger cracks have almost swallowed his Boxer, Bruce. 

“Sometimes his foot goes in, and if his foot goes in the next time he’s walking he’s going to be jumping,” said Romney. 

Blame the unrelenting sun for cutting the life span of one of the roads in Bridlewood Estates in half. It’ll take a lot more rain than what we got on Sunday before experts can truly grasp the scope of the problem. 

“If we get small rains, short rains these cracks may firm back up. If we get large, inches upon inches and days and days of rain it could really be bad for us,” said Grant.

That’s because too much moisture inside the cracks will wreak even more havoc on the shifting ground. 

“Eventually this roadway will start pushing laterally into the ditch,” said Grant. 

In the past road crews have tried to repair the cracks. 

“This is the filling they did last time, and look what happened it’s right back to where it was and even got wider,” said Romney. 

This time Grant says crews will wait to fix less traveled rural roads until a full weather pattern has run its course.   Busy roads are getting immediate attention. Grant says he won’t know the financial impact until we get more rain.

County EOC adds Weather Station

1 10 2011

The Fort Bend County Emergency Operations Center has installed a new weather station on the side of its building; weather data transmits directly into the Center’s Command Room………..

Weather Station at Fort Bend County EOC