Parker County Judge Pat Deen has issued a local disaster declaration from flooding.
According to the Brazos River Authority, a third gate at the Possum Kingdom Lake Morris Sheppard Dam will be opened at 8 p.m. tonight.
"It's an absolute that there will be homes with water in them because it's happened before. One that trigger is met, which opens that third gate -- with the amount of cubic feet of water that's being released -- there is going to be some flooding," Deen said. "We're setting up resources wit the Red Cross and others and it's important that we make sure to convey to them what to expect and hopefully to seek higher ground. The best we can do is to communicate to them and have resources available when they need them.
"We will be monitoring this to see what happens. The water is already coming out of the banks as I've seen already and once they open that third gate, it's going to magnify that."
According to declaration document, the state of disaster shall continue for a period of not more than seven days from the date of the declaration unless continued or renewed by the commissioners court.
“[Parker County] has suffered widespread or severe damage injury, or loss of life or property (or there is imminent threat of same) resulting from flooding,” according to the document signed by Deen and released Thursday. “The county judge of Parker County has determined that extraordinary measure must be taken to alleviate the suffering of people and to protect or rehabilitate property.”
The disaster declaration takes effect immediately.
Brazos River Authority Public Information Officer Judy Pierce said it will take 10 to 12 hours for the water to reach the Horseshoe Bend area.
"It should hit the Horseshoe Bend area within about 10 to 12 hours. It will be daylight at that point and that was part of the planning in the opening of this gate, so it would occur during daylight hours," Pierce said. "Minor flooding begins at 21 feet, so we feel like [the Brazos River is] probably going to hit just right under the bottom of that minor flooding. Anybody that has a home outside of the floodplain should be fine and there are some homes that are in the floodplain area, so they may experience some problems. We’re hoping it’s not going to be much higher than what we saw on Monday when it peaked at 20.3 feet, maybe just a little bit higher than that, and it didn’t get quite into minor flooding."