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Governor Abbott Provides Update On State Response Following Perryton Tornado Damage

June 17, 2023 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

Governor Greg Abbott today held a briefing with state and local officials in Perryton and provided an update on the state’s ongoing response and recovery efforts at a press conference at the Ochiltree County Law Enforcement Center following severe storms and tornadoes on Thursday night in Ochiltree and Cass counties. Governor Abbott also added these additional counties to the state's disaster declaration: Franklin, Harrison, Marion, Upshur, and Wood counties. 
 
“One thing that you see epitomized when you come into a room like this and visit with local officials and first responders can be summed up in one word: resiliency,” said Governor Abbott. “What Texans in Perryton have gone through over the past couple of days have been nothing short of horrific. At the same time, it’s encouraging and inspiring to see the way the community has come together to rebuild. But the one thing that cannot be rebuilt is a life. Unfortunately, this devastating storm took three lives. Our prayers remain with the families of those who did lose a loved one. I ask all Texans to join us in praying for healing and hope for the people devastated by this tragic tornado. I want to thank state and local officials, as well as neighboring states, that have come together to respond to this horrific storm.”
 
The Governor extended the full support of the State of Texas to impacted communities as the state continues to provide all resources and personnel needed to rebuild and recover. Governor Abbott also thanked state and local officials for swiftly responding to severe weather and tornado damage.  
 
The Governor was joined at the briefing and press conference by U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, State Representative Four Price, Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) Chief Nim Kidd, Perryton Mayor Kerry Symons, Police Chief Nick Yara, Fire Chief and EMS Director Paul Dutcher, Orchiltree County Sheriff Terry Bouchard, and other state and local officials.
 
Texans impacted by the devasting storm and tornadoes in Ochiltree and Cass Counties are encouraged to complete TDEM’s Individual State of Texas Assessment Tool (iSTAT) self-reporting damage survey to help state and local officials identify damages and determine the state’s eligibility for federal disaster assistance. The survey is available in both English and Spanish and can be accessed by visiting: damage.tdem.texas.gov.
 
On Friday, Governor Abbott issued a disaster declaration for Ochiltree and Cass counties to further support Texas’ recovery efforts in response to extensive damage in those counties. Additional counties may be added to the disaster declaration as damage assessments are completed. On Thursday, Governor Abbott directed TDEM to deploy state emergency response resources to meet urgent life-safety needs in Perryton.   
 
Read the Governor's disaster declaration.