Tempers flare as La Joya floodwaters rise
Mon, 19 Jul 2010 03:52:50 GMT —
The scene was at times chaotic and with tempers rising, as many La Joya families rushed to get their belongings out of their homes on Sunday.
Many told Action 4 News they felt city leaders are not doing enough to help them in their time of need.
"The authorities should come and help us instead of just writing tickets, Miguel Giron, one of the residents in the flooded neighborhood said.
He, along with many other residents along the Military Highway in La Joya wondered why firefighters and police were not around to help them as they waded across the water, trying to keep their belongings dry.
"They should ask for help, Maria Gonzalez pleaded. They should get moving vans, bring someone to help us, please.
She had to use a boat to get most of her belongings out of her home.
However, city leaders told Action 4 News they are doing what they can.
La Joya Mayor Billy Leo said the residents were warned about the flooding risks in their neighborhood days ago. "Many times what you have is that folks are unwilling to leave and that becomes a problem," he said.
Mayor Leo added that the city's small fire and police departments are spread thin as they work to keep the city's residents safe from the rising flood waters.
Moreover, many of the officers also have to keep their homes safe as well.
"It TMs hard work but we can TMt stop the water so were just continuing to do what we have to do to get out of here and evacuate," La Joya Officer Rick Salinas said.
His home is also in the flooded area, just north of the Military Highway, in one of the lowest lying areas of the city.
Salinas has already moved out most of his belongings.
Just a few things remain inside as they prepare to leave.
"As far as right now, I have everything I had, my furniture inside storage, he added. And I'll be staying with my sister."
With the help from family, he's working on sealing his home to keep water out, in case the levels rise, an event that at this point almost seems inevitable.