National Security

Abbott Activates Entire Texas National Guard to Respond to Hurricane Harvey

Military truck navigates along Interstate 10, which has been inundated with flooding from Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Texas / Getty

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R.) on Monday activated the entire Texas National Guard to respond to the massive flooding and other devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, bringing the total number of deployed guardsmen to around 12,000.

The national guardsmen will continue to assist in the search and rescue efforts as many Texans work to gain cover in nearby shelters. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is coordinating the resources of the federal government with Abbott and the state of Texas.

"It is imperative that we do everything possible to protect the lives and safety of people across the state of Texas as we continue to face the aftermath of this storm," Abbott said.

"The Texas National Guard is working closely with FEMA and federal troops to respond urgently with the growing needs of Texans who have fallen victim to Hurricane Harvey, and the activation of the entire Guard will assist in the efforts already underway," he added. "I would like to thank FEMA administrator Brock Long, as well as all our brave first responders for their hard work in helping those impacted by this terrible storm."

With Texans still in danger from high flood levels, Maj. Gen. John F. Nichols, Texas adjutant general, said the men and women of the state's National Guard will work tirelessly until all are safe.

"We will not rest until we have made every effort to rescue all those in harms way," Nichols said. "I want to thank Governor Abbott for his continued leadership and look forward to serving the great people of Texas."

With as many as 50 counties affected by Hurricane—now Tropical Storm—Harvey throughout southeast Texas, officials are expecting more than 30,000 in emergency shelters.