Flood recovery continues in Austin neighborhoods


by TINA SHIVELY / KVUE News and Photojournalist KENNETH NULL

Bio | Email | Follow: @TinaS_KVUE


Posted on November 4, 2013 at 8:44 AM

Updated Monday, Nov 4 at 4:16 PM

AUSTIN -- Days after flood waters destroyed some Austin neighborhoods, crews are working hard to help people get back on their feet.

The Onion Creek neighborhood is full of homes destroyed by all that water. All of the roads are open, but Austin police are maintaining a presence in the neighborhood. They want to make sure none of the damaged homes are looted.

Dozens of members of Austin's Parks and Recreation's Urban Forestry Division were in the neighborhood Monday. They're taking debris from the yards of houses and bringing them to the curb so heavy equipment like grappling trucks can pick the debris up and cart it all away. The workers say they will be in the neighborhood until dark Monday night and as long as it takes to bring the neighborhood back to normal.

Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell visited flooded sites on Sunday. More than 1,100 homes were affected in Travis County alone. Soon after the mayor issued a local state of emergency for Austin.

Austin's Code Compliance department flagged homes according to their damage. More than 300 homes are marked with red signs, indicating dangerous conditions. Twelve of those homes are too dangerous for re-entry.

More than 125 tons of debris have been collected from homes so far. About 44 vehicles have been removed from Onion Creek.

At the nearby Oak Meadows Baptist Church, the Austin Disaster Relief Network (ADRN) is collecting supplies for their crews to aid in clean up.  They've received lots of clothing and baby items. Now they're hoping for donations of shovels, sheet-rock and trash cans, to help the Onion Creek neighborhood get back on its feet.

"It's huge. It's bigger than anybody expected," said Mark Shackleford with the Christian Compassion Center, a group working with the ADRN. "I woke up in the morning. It was a beautiful day, and suddenly 1,100 families were affected. I mean, it's huge in this area, very significant."

Since the Halloween floods, the American Red Cross of Central Texas has served more than 10,000 meals and snacks to flood victims. Their mission continues.

Go here for more information on how you can help flood survivors.