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Waterspout picks up bounce house on Florida beach; children injured

FT. LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA (AP) - Authorities say three children have been injured after a waterspout made landfall in Fort Lauderdale and sent an inflatable bounce house flying into the air.

The National Weather Service in Miami reported that one adult was injured and that one of the three children was seriously hurt.

Fort Lauderdale Police spokesman Keven Dupree says when the waterspout came ashore Monday afternoon, it uprooted the bounce house and sent it across a parking lot and over four lanes of traffic.

Dupree says there were three children in the bounce house when it went airborne. They immediately fell onto the sand.

He says they were alert and conscious when they were taken to a hospital.

Video on local television stations shows the whirling column of air and water mist move from the ocean onto the sand, tossing a canopy and rolling the bounce house before lifting it into the air.

Governor adds Jasper, Newton Counties to disaster declaration



AUSTIN – From Office of the Governor


As severe weather including tornadoes, heavy rainfall, thunderstorms and flooding continue across areas of Texas, Governor Greg Abbott today declared a state of disaster in Archer, Bastrop, Caldwell, Cass, Collin, Dewitt, Fannin, Grayson, Harrison, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hill, Houston, Kendall, Jasper, Johnson, Newton, Nueces, Parker, San Jacinto, Walker, Wichita and Wilson counties, authorizing further mobilization of state resources to assist impacted communities. Additional counties may be added to the declaration as the situation develops.


“The State of Texas has taken brisk action in dispatching all available resources to aid those affected by this severe weather system, and I strongly urge all Texans to exercise every possible precaution to ensure their safety and the safety of their families and neighbors,” said Governor Abbott. “My thoughts and prayers are with all the communities that are suffering as a result of this weather disaster, and I am grateful for the first responders who have worked tirelessly to provide shelter, care and resources to all impacted areas.”


To view Governor Abbott’s disaster declaration, click here.


Governor Abbott declared a state of disaster in Bosque, Clay, Denton, Eastland, Gaines, Montague and Van Zandt counties on May 11th, 2015 and added Cooke, Grimes, Hood, Navarro, Smith and Wise counties on May 15th, 2015. The Governor’s declaration follows an elevated activation of the Texas State Operations Center (SOC) to enable rapid deployment of state resources announced on Friday, May 4th.


Current forecasts indicate the continuation of possible severe thunderstorms, large hail, damaging winds, flash flooding, river flooding and tornadoes across the state throughout the week. At this time, any additional rainfall will exacerbate already saturated grounds, which could quickly lead to dangerous flash flooding and extended river flooding. The SOC – in coordination with the Texas Emergency Management Council – remains at an elevated activation level and is continuing to monitor weather conditions and coordinate with the National Weather Service.


Texans are encouraged to follow these safety tips during this weather event:


  • When severe storms threaten, the safest place to be is indoors.
  • Avoid areas already flooded and avoid any fast-flowing water.
  • Be extremely cautious of any water on roads or in creeks, streams, storm drains or other areas – never attempt to cross flowing streams or drive across flooded roadways and observe road barricades placed for your protection.
  • Remember that dangerous waters can seem deceptively calm, and if you encounter flooding, move to higher ground.
  • Monitor weather radios and news broadcasts for updated information on current and anticipated severe weather in your area.
  • Keep in mind that flood dangers are even harder to recognize at night.

·         Be mindful that rising and moving water can also threaten people on foot and individuals near recreational waterways impacted by significant rainfall.

  • Monitor weather radios and news broadcasts for updated information on current and anticipated severe weather in your area.
  • Stay informed and heed warnings by local officials.


For additional safety tips related to tornadoes, thunderstorms and flooding, see:


The American Red Cross has established the following website for individuals in impacted areas:


The following resources are involved in the state’s continued response to this weather event:


Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS): Assisting with reconnaissance, search and rescue efforts, and providing personnel and resources as needed.


Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD): Conducting search and rescue missions during flash flooding/water incidents in affected areas.


Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS): DSHS have mobilized resources, equipment and personnel to provide medical assistance as needed. 


Texas Military Forces (TMF): TMF has deployed aircraft and high-profile vehicles, and continues providing assistance with search and rescue missions as needed.


Texas Task Force 1 (TTF1): Air and boat rescue squads have been deployed for search and rescue missions as needed.


Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ): Continues to monitor dams and river levels in the affected areas.


Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT): Crews have deployed resources to address flooding conditions and debris cleanup impacting roadways.


Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC): Personnel continue to work with utility companies to resolve power/utility issues.


Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA): Assisting communities to apply for funds administered by TDA that will help with storm cleanup and rebuilding.


Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD): Organizations continue to provide shelter and other mass care needs as requested.


Additional partners and resources include: Texas A&M Forest Service; Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service; Civil Air Patrol; Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs; Texas Department of Criminal Justice; Texas General Land Office; Texas Health and Human Services Commission; Texas Department of Insurance; Railroad Commission of Texas; Texas Education Agency; Department of Aging and Disability Services; Department of Family and Protective Services; Texas Workforce Commission; Texas Animal Health Commission; Texas 2-1-1; and Texas Department of Information Resources.

12 reported missing after Hays County flooding


Hays County officials said Monday morning that 12 people are confirmed missing following the weekend flooding.

The 12 were all in Wimberley for the Memorial Day weekend, officials said, and had gathered in Wimberley from “several jurisdictions.”

The body of one person was found but that person has not been identified.

Check back later for more details.

Jasper County Sheriff's Office report

JASPER COUNTY - From Office of Jasper County Sheriff Mitchel Newman

The storms over the weekend helped keep the trouble down as the showers seem to cool things down.  We had some brothers fighting at the Bass Buster Inn and they stayed with us rent free.  There was a welding machine and commercial pressure washer stolen from CR 317, in the Beulah Springs area. There was a 48” box fan, skill saw, and several batteries stolen from a farm on FM 1408.

We have a 17 y/o kid in jail for theft which is starting at an early age.  We have to keep him by himself as it causes a lot of problems for the jail staff.

With all of the rain we have received, there are some areas that we are watching.  Some things to remember; do not drive in water that you are not sure of the depth, put things up that will wash-off, always be careful of your electrical lines, get pets to safety if you’re not sure you can make it back, and most of all don’t wait until last minute where someone else will have to risk their life to save yours.  Call us as soon as you recognize that you or someone else is having a problem.  Don’t wait as time can be really important.

We have 105 in jail.  We are now in the process of giving out 10 scholarships to our 5 local schools.  We had so many great kids to choose from and the only way we can do this is because of your continued support.  So, I will thank you and I know that 10 kids will too…            

Update on Trinity River flood stage

LIBERTY COUNTY - From Emergency Management Coordinator

The Trinity River remains in flood stage and is expected to continue above flood stage for the next week, possibly longer.  Levels are approx. 3 feet above flood stage in Liberty and approx 2 feet above flood stage in Moss Bluff.

Trinity River Authority officials have indicated this morning that the release from the Lake Livingston Dam will remain at 58,200 cfs.

The latest weather forecast is calling for the possibility of  more rain today in our area.

The Red Cross continues to visit with residents in the affected areas around the river and there are no request for sheltering at this time.

Water will continue to cover roads inside the flooded subdivisions, however, we still have no reports of homes being flooded.

We are monitoring conditions and will update as warranted, we ask that residents living near the Trinity River monitor local media for weather updates as this next rain event approaches later today.

Tom Branch

Coordinator Office of Emergency Management & Homeland Security

Liberty County, Texas

DPS releases name of teen bicyclist killed in crash

JASPER COUNTY - The Texas Department of Public Safety has released the name of a teenager killed when a vehicle collided with his bicycle.

Trooper Stephanie Davis says Dakota Sorenson, 15, of Houston, was killed in the crash at about 8:45 Friday evening on Highway 62 near Buna.

Trooper Davis says the driver of a pickup truck was traveling north on FM 62 and Sorenson was also traveling north in the middle of the northbound lane. The driver didn't see Sorenson and the right front part of the truck hit the teen.

He died at CHRISTUS Hospital St. Elizabeth. The 52-year-old driver of the truck is from Buna and wasn't hurt.


Ambulance crashes, first responders unhurt

JASPER COUNTY - By Steve W Stewart/KJAS & Rayburn Broadcasting Company

  A pair of paramedics were uninjured after their ambulance crashed and rolled over just west of Jasper late Sunday evening. The accident occurred shortly after 11:00 on Highway 63 West near the Curtis Community, and fortunately there was no patient onboard.

According to Trooper Jordan Eastridge of the Texas Department of Public Safety, the driver was David Warren Ogle, and the passenger was Wade Alexander, and the two work for Care Plus EMS.

Eastridge said Ogle told him that they were eastbound in their 2009 Ford E-350 ambulance when Ogle fell asleep at the wheel. The ambulance first went off the south side of the highway, then crossed both lanes and went off the north side of the highway and rolled over.

Eastridge said Ogle was nearing the end of a 48 hour shift, and it’s believed fatigue was the primary factor.

Ogle and Alexander were checked out at the scene by their colleagues from Acadian EMS, but neither one needed medical care.

Amazingly, the ambulance had no damage from the crash, but it did receive a small amount of damage when being pulled upright by a wrecker crew.

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