Ennis and Mesquite have opened reception centers for residents from the Gulf Coast evacuated due to Hurricane Laura.
The Ennis Reception Center at 850 South Interstate Highway 45 is open to those who self-evacuate, while the Mesquite Reception Center at 15515 East Interstate Highway 20 is for evacuees transported by the state of Texas.
Texas Mobilizes to Help After Hurricane Laura Comes Ashore
As of Wednesday evening, Ennis city officials reported more than 700 evacuees had checked in.
Steven Dorne and his family from Vidor, just outside of Beaumont, were among them.
“We’ve already been through a lot before, so I decided we’d get out of there before it became a problem," said Dorne.
Dorne said during Hurricane Harvey, he'd stayed behind.
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He watched his brother's home take on nine feet of water.
Three years later, they and their neighbors are still rebuilding.
This time, they'll watch from a safe distance while hoping Laura doesn't make matters worse.
"We are also involved in helping hundreds of families from the coast get refuge, meals and services here in Dallas County by placing them in hotels and providing them with services in their time of need. North Texans should be proud of their welcoming spirit and how the people of Dallas County always step up to help neighbors in need," said Dallas County officials in a news release Wednesday.
"This will be done without an increased risk of infection to the community. The people fleeing Hurricane Laura are no more likely to have COVID-19 than members of the general population anywhere in Texas, and the services that we provide to them, including COVID-19 testing, will be done from our excess capacity so no one in Dallas County will be denied a COVID-19 test or services due to the services being provided to our neighbors to from the Texas coast."
Displaced residents who haven't already checked into a shelter should report to the Ennis Reception Center, the Red Cross said.
For more information, call 211.