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Bevil Oaks residents can now go check their homes for Imelda damage

Sheriff Zena Stephens gave the OK for residents to re-enter Bevil Oaks Sunday night.

BEVIL OAKS, Texas — Bevil Oaks residents are cleared to begin returning to their homes to assess damage from Tropical Storm Imelda Sunday night. 

Jefferson County Sheriff gave permission for residents to return around 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22, the City of Bevil Oaks said in a Facebook post. 

But the only access to the city is through Sour Lake on Highway 105 to Sweetgum Road since Highway 105 at Tram Road is still closed to through traffic, the post said. 

"Once you reach the checkpoint in Sour Lake you must produce your ID showing that you are a resident of Bevil Oaks in order to pass that checkpoint," Bevil Oaks officials said in the post. "Once you get to Bevil Oaks on Sweetgum they will be checking IDs. Please drive with extreme caution as there are still areas of standing water that can cause wakes that could damage homes and drown out an automobile."

After Bevil Oaks residents pass the fire station, officials advised them to turn right (east) onto the boulevard and bypass whatever streets are not blocked off to bypass the flooded area near the old city hall building. 

Anything past Sweetgum Road is still inaccessible due to floodwaters, the post said. 

"Everyone is anxious to be back home so be very careful and conscious of your own safety as well as that of your neighbor," officials said in the post. "Bevil Oaks needs all citizens home and healthy."

Mayor Becky Ford said for residents whose cars are not high enough to safely pass through floodwaters, the old civic center and boulevard has limited parking. The city has a transport vehicle at the fire station to transport families to their homes. 

"Please take advantage of this service and do not risk endangering your family or  losing your vehicle. Again, your safe return to your home is our top priority," Ford said.

RELATED: Do not go home yet: Bevil Oaks streets still covered by two feet of water

RELATED: Why can't I sign up for FEMA assistance after Imelda?

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