AUSTIN, Texas — Officials on Sunday announced plans to airlift thousands of Louisiana hurricane survivors out of Texas in an effort to control shelter crowds in a state that has taken in almost 250,000 evacuees in a week.
Texas officials estimate that 139,000 Louisiana residents are staying in 137 shelters in the state, with an additional 100,000 in hotels and motels. Other shelters may not yet be on the state's radar, so the number of people housed in Texas is probably higher.
"There are shelters set up in other states that are sitting empty while thousands arrive in Texas by the day, if not the hour," Perry said in a statement. "We are doing everything we can to address the needs of evacuees as they arrive, but in order to meet this enormous need, we need help from other states."
Efforts also began to bring cruise ships to Galveston to house Louisiana evacuees, and Perry talked to federal officials about taking ships to Beaumont and Corpus Christi, as well.