1884 was the last time parts of Newton and Orange counties in Texas saw flood waters like they’re experiencing now. Water from the Sabine River temporarily closed portions of I-10 yesterday along the Texas-Louisiana border. Earlier today, we learned that eastbound lanes of the interstate had to be closed again.
This to say nothing of the amount of destruction the flooding is doing to homes and businesses in the area. Governor Greg Abbott has declared a state of disaster in affected counties around the Sabine River and is planning to visit some of them. Brandon Scott is a reporter with the Beaumont Enterprise. He says some communities are so flooded, they’ve completely shut down.
“Deweyville is completely flooded. It is not functioning right now,” Scott says. “And I believe it’s been that way since the early part of the week, certainly since Tuesday when I was there.”
Heavy rains throughout the state over the past week have caused the Sabine River to rise to historic levels. Deweyville has been one of the hardest hit communities because of its proximity to the Toledo Bend reservoir on the Sabine at the Texas-Louisiana border.
“The issue there is that it is very close to the reservoir that had to release upwards of 400 billion gallons of water over the last several days since the rain from last week,” Scott says.
Then there’s the I-10 closures, which have caused significant travel delays between Texas and Louisiana.
“There’s clearly a traffic delay, and it would be difficult to overstate how important it is to be able to travel from Texas to Louisiana,” Scott says. “People very muych rely on it to a large degree, and the flooding is not only affecting the residents who live there, but the commuters that travel to and from Louisiana.”
Listen to the full interview in the audio player above.