Emergency Preparedness Key During Inclement Weather

October 01, 2021
Carla Hulsey

Tropical Storm Nicholas made landfall on the eastern part of the Matagorda Peninsula, west-southwest of Sargent Beach, Texas on Sept. 14 as a Category 1 Hurricane.

UT Police prepared for potential impacts from the storm on institutional and campus operations and readied its own emergency response in case of service delivery disruption. Ride-out and special operation teams arrived at their shifts fully prepared to put disaster response plans into place.

However, during Nicholas, the Texas Medical Center (TMC) area, while impacted by high-speed winds and rains, did not require UT Police to deploy Laverne and Shirley, two high-water evacuation vehicles (HWEV) UT Police acquired in 2018 following Hurricane Harvey.

Captain Michael Redmond tweeted at about 4 a.m. on Sept. 14 that most streets in the TMC were passable.

UT Police’s emergency response capabilities have grown substantially following Hurricane Harvey. With the addition of Laverne and Shirley to UT Police’s fleet, UT Police also assembled a Water Strike Team responsible to aid those in need when flood waters become a threat. The team also mans the HWEVs.

Emergency preparedness is key to ensure campus-wide mobility and access during a storm and with these emergency response capabilities, UT Police can help manage the critical supply chain for medical waste, food, transportation and other institutional necessities.

At the start of the 2021 hurricane season, UT Police launched a new safety class to prepare the community for inclement weather. Weathering the Storm: Resilience in Unfavorable Conditions provides an overview on preparing for a natural disaster.

For a complete list of resources to aid during severe weather, visit UT Police’s Severe Weather Resources page.

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