McALLEN – City of McAllen Public Works Department crews are assisting Hidalgo County residents with the drainage of flood waters and the removal of downed trees and brush that were the result of a wind storm and rain event several weeks ago.
The City, at the request of the Hidalgo County Office of Emergency Management, sent on June 1 two brush trucks with grapple arms, a roll-off truck and city personnel to assist Hidalgo County Precinct 1 workers in the Mid-Valley to pick up storm debris.
County workers were inundated with hundreds of requests for road-side brush removal. Since City of McAllen workers joined the effort, they have picked up more than 2,000 cubic yards of debris and also assisted with loading other brush trucks.
McAllen also assisted the Hidalgo County Drainage District with its “dewatering” efforts in rural areas that experienced flooding and slow drainage. Some areas recorded more than five inches of rain during that event and were underwater.
McAllen Assistant City Manager and Deputy Emergency Coordinator Jeff Johnston coordinated with Public Works to send portable pumps and a vacuum truck to assist the drainage district and in the last two weeks transported a total of 373,600 gallons of water out of inundated areas.
“The City of McAllen has a history of stepping up and helping other entities during emergencies and times of need and this is no different,” said City Manager Roel “Roy” Rodriguez. “Obviously this weather event hit rural areas hard, and we have partnered with Hidalgo County officials to help county residents where we can with McAllen resources.”
Rodriguez said McAllen’s decision to assist was part of Mayor Jim Darling’s regional approach to leadership, and helping was the right thing to do and part of the culture at the City.
In the past, the City of McAllen has lent pumps, trucks and personnel to help with rain events all around the Rio Grande Valley. The City has also helped with fire and other emergencies. Perhaps most notably, in 2008 McAllen sent crews and equipment to Galveston to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike.
Hidalgo County was recently included in the list of counties designated for individual assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Residents with damage can call: 800-621-3362.