LANCASTER (CBSDFW.COM) – One of the twisters that tore across southern Dallas County directly hit the City of Lancaster. Damage and debris in the city is so expansive that a mandatory, citywide curfew began at 7 p.m. Tuesday night and ended at 7 a.m. today.
Since the curfew has been lifted some residents will be allowed back to their homes, but getting inside some of those dwellings will the hard part. As daylight broke Wednesday morning debris and rubble could bee seen covering roofs, windows, yards and pathways.
At a Wednesday morning press conference Lancaster Mayor Marcus Knight said will the curfew has been lifted residents and business owners will not be allowed back into the hardest hit areas.
No one will be allowed into the prohibited areas of – Telephone Road to the north, Sunny Meadow Road to the south, Pebble Beach Drive to the east and Bayport Drive to the west.
Mayor Knight said the first goal is to begin damage assessments. Some 300 structures are believed to have been damaged in Tuesday’s storms. Now, the goal is to determine the extent of that damage.
While exact damages are being determined, city leaders say public safety must take priority and that begins with basic debris removal.
While initial cleanup beings Lancaster officials want to assure homeowners that crews will not do any type of destruction or demolition to property. They say only things that pose a health or safety hazard will be removed from property.
After debris has been removed homeowners will be allowed into the restricted areas, but only with police escorts. Leaders say the law enforcement presence will ensure that only homeowners are getting into the areas and that no valuables are being disturbed.
A Lancaster emergency operations center has been established –- the number there is (972) 218-2631. Homeowners can call the number to get information and help.
Donations to help residents in the city are being accepted at 3132 Houston School Road. As of Wednesday morning the most urgent items needed were toiletries and baby care items.
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