|  TPWD News Releases Dated 2008-09-12                                    |
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[ Note: This item is more than nine years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ] [TH]
Sept. 12, 2008
Game Warden Takes Storm Prep Personally as Neighbors Brace for Ike
8 p.m. CDT
ANAHUAC, Texas -- Game Warden John Feist doesn't call it community policing, but it probably fits the definition. As Hurricane Ike approached the upper Texas coast Friday afternoon, Feist made a 90-mile loop through the middle of Chambers County, checking on friends and neighbors.
Some were planning to stay through the storm. Some were planning on leaving. More than a few were already gone.
"Before this gets too bad, I want to know who is here," Feist said. "If someone needs help getting out, I want to know that, too."
At the Moody Ranch, foreman D.D. Leggett was loading tools into the back of a horse trailer. In another horse trailer, a nervous paint and two sorrel quarter horses were loosely tied to slats.
"We're going," Leggett said. "I'll probably go to my dad's."
After making sure Leggett didn't need any help and that the ranch's gate would be locked behind him, Feist said his goodbyes: "Call us if you need anything," he said.
At another spread south of town, Pine Island schoolteacher and rancher Jean Lagow was dropping off a flatbed trailer and rushing across the Farm-to-Market Road to pick up one last piece of plywood.
"I've moved five herds of cows and 280 bales of hay today, and I still have to get all the dogs in the house with me," she said.
The lanky game warden pulled on a pair of gloves and helped the woman with her last two tasks.
Feist and four other game wardens are riding-out the storm in Chambers County. Other game wardens are staged with airboats and river boats in Silsbee, north of Beaumont. If needed, they'll tow boats south in the morning.
Farther west, 26 game wardens with Strike Team One are ready to move in as soon as the storm passes.
How the Chambers County game wardens will be employed Sat. is anyone's guess, Feist said. They may be sent through High Island to Bolivar Peninsula, or east to Port Arthur.
They may have plenty to do in largely rural Chambers County. Search and rescue, delivery of food, water and ice, and the prevention of looting are all duties familiar to game wardens in the wake of storms.
At the end of the day, as winds built toward tropical storm strength, Feist finally pulled up to his own home just east of Anahuac. The electricity had failed, and the game warden quickly unloaded his freezer and refrigerator into ice chests, grabbed his sleeping bag and several changes of clothes, and reported to the Chambers County Sheriff's Office to shelter overnight.
"I just picked-up all the dead branches in the yard," he sighed, as he drove away. "Guess I'll have to do it all over again, next week sometime.
On the Net:
TPWD Emergency Information: http://tpwd.texas.gov/site/emergency/

[ Note: This item is more than nine years old. Please take the publication date into consideration for any date references. ]
[ Media Contact: TPWD News, news@tpwd.texas.gov, 512-389-8030 ] [TH]
Sept. 12, 2008
Ike Update From TPWD: Game Wardens Deployed, 32 State Parks Closed, Others Accept Evacuees
12:05 p.m. CDT -- Update 3
Below is information sent by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department to the Governor's Press Office today. The governor's office is coordinating official communication about Ike for the State of Texas, including TPWD activities. The following information is provided as a service and convenience for TPWD's audience. For complete information, see the Texas governor's web site at http://governor.state.tx.us/, or news media may phone the press office at (512) 463-1826.
Regarding Texas State Parks, 32 parks are now closed due to Ike, as listed below. Other state parks are accepting people evacuating from areas hit by the storm. More than 1,000 Ike evacuees are now staying in state parks outside the storm's expected path. Evacuees from storm-damaged areas may tent camp or stay in RVs or campers at no cost in Texas State Parks, and they may stay in cabins or screen shelters at discounted rates. The latest information is available through the Texas State Parks reservation center at (512) 389-8900 or on the TPWD Web site (tpwd.texas.gov). The public can also phone individual state parks to see whether a park is closed or accepting evacuees.
Texas Game Wardens/TPWD Law Enforcement Division
--TPWD has more than 200 game wardens and associated equipment deployed for Hurricane Ike in Southeast Texas. All of the approximately 500 wardens in the state are preparing to deploy if necessary.
--This morning, LE supervisors in all parts of the state were directed to assemble additional strike teams. Each team will consist of 10 game wardens and one captain, and will be prepared to be self-sustaining for 5 days. Each will be prepared to deploy when activated by the State Operations Center.
--Deployed coastal resources include dozens of game wardens based out of Region 4 (Houston) and Region 10 (Corpus Christi). More than 50 Region 4 game wardens are staged for rescue deployment once the storm passes.
--In addition, Strike Team 1, a team of game wardens from outside coastal regions, is deployed in Robertson County, prepared to enter the affected area as soon as the storm passes and assist with rescues and other aid as needed. Strike Team 1 includes 26 Game Wardens, two Radio Technicians, two Communications Operators, seven airboats, six River boats, one Communications Trailer, and one Fuel Trailers
--About 16 game wardens are staged in or near the Beaumont-Port Arthur area, where it is expected they may be especially needed, since there is a greater concentration of city, county, state and federal responders with boats and equipment in the Houston-Galveston area.
Texas State Parks
Below is a listing of state parks that are CLOSED until further notice due to Ike.
--Goose Island
--Mustang Island
--Lake Corpus Christi
--Fort Parker
--Brazos Bend
--Lake Livingston
--Lake Texana
--Martin Dies, Jr.
--San Jacinto
--Sea Rim (still closed due to Hurricane Rita damage)
--Sheldon Lake
--Stephen F. Austin
--Village Creek
--Fanthorp Inn
--Washington on the Brazos
--Lake Somerville
--Monument Hill
--Caddo Lake
--Cooper Lake
--Lake Bob Sandlin
--Lake Tawakoni
--Martin Creek Lake
--Mission Tejas
--Purtis Creek
On the Net:
TPWD Emergency Information: http://tpwd.texas.gov/site/emergency/