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Texas wildfires affect members CUs safe
FARMERS BRANCH, Texas (9/8/11)--Tropical Storm Lee whipped up strong northwesterly winds across Texas that are blamed for the rapid spread of several wildfires burning tens of thousands of acres, affecting some credit union members, but not harming any credit unions to date, according to the Texas Credit Union League (TCUL).
Winds from Tropical Storm Lee are blamed for the rapid spread in Texas of several wildfires burning tens of thousands of acres. Some credit union members are affected, but no credit unions have been damaged to date. (Photo provided by the Texas Credit Union League)
Central Texas has been hard hit with fires raging in Bastrop, Hays, Travis and Williamson counties. The fires reportedly have scorched 40,000 acres and destroyed hundreds of homes. Many more hundreds of properties have been damaged or threatened by the blazes (LoneStar Leaguer Sept. 7). TCUL has been in contact with credit unions in the affected areas. Based on preliminary reports, the credit unions in the area are safe. At least one credit union has reported that a branch in the affected area is limiting its hours of operation. While the credit unions have not experienced any physical damage, there have been reports that some members and credit union staff have been affected. TCUL is communicating with the credit unions to determine the extent of damage that the wildfires have caused to the homes of members and staff. The Texas Credit Union Foundation is ready to assist credit union staff. Phase one emergency grants are provided to credit union employees to assist with immediate disaster relief needs, such as out-of-pocket costs that may result from being evacuated. The grants are up to $500 per credit union employee. The intent of the grants is to help stabilize credit union employees’ situation so they can return to work. Preliminary estimates for insured homeowner losses from Texas wildfires tally more than $100 million--setting records for the state, according to Mark Hanna, a spokesman for the Insurance Council of Texas (Property Casualty 360 Sept. 7).
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