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Houston’s Post Rita Re-Vacuation

Thousands of evacuees are heading back into the Houston area this week. The mayor wants people to come back in stages according to their zipcodes — but many people are disregarding those instructions. The Houston they’re returning to seems quite different than the one they left last week. The streets are almost empty in most […]

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Thousands of evacuees are heading back into the Houston area this week. The mayor wants people to come back in stages according to their zipcodes — but many people are disregarding those instructions. The Houston they’re returning to seems quite different than the one they left last week.

The streets are almost empty in most parts of town, an odd sight for Houstonians. The shelves in grocery stores are also almost empty. Stores are running low on milk, eggs, bottled water and some canned goods, although shipments of food are arriving. Karen Fontenot of Missouri City says she watched people lining up for gas and food when the stores reopened.

Residents heading back into the area will notice the quiet, almost slow-motion atmosphere in the city. But on the outskirts of Houston evacuees are dealing with traffic headaches again. Texas Department of Transportation Spokesperson Janelle Gbur says the freeways are clogging up a bit on I-45 North coming from Dallas and also on I-10 near Columbus.

Gbur says part of the congestion is caused by people returning to the city before their scheduled time. She says some of the drivers are also in industries where they are compelled to get back and assist in the reopening of services in the area. Laurie Johnson HPR News.

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Laurie Johnson-Ramirez

Laurie Johnson-Ramirez

News Director

Laurie Johnson-Ramirez leads news coverage for Houston Public Media across broadcast and digital platforms. Ramirez is a native Houstonian who started her career at Houston Public Media in 2002. Before becoming News Director, Ramirez held the position of Executive Producer for Daily News, leading daily and breaking news coverage, helping...

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