The city of Beaumont announced early Thursday morning that it had lost its water supply due to rising flood waters from Harvey.

The outage was caused by flooding near a pump station located along the Neches River, officials said in a statement Thursday morning. The city — home to roughly 120,000 people in Southeast Texas — also lost its secondary water source at the Loeb Wells.

"Under these circumstances, the City of Beaumont anticipates it will lose water pressure throughout the city within the next three to four hours," the city posted in a statement at 12:30 a.m., early Thursday morning.

The military is working to get clean drinking water to Beaumont residents, according to NPR.

The Texas Tribune thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Carol Riley, a public information officer for the city's office of emergency management, told The Texas Tribune that as of Thursday morning, around 2,000 people were in shelters and a couple hundred more in churches, school gymnasiums or at the Beaumont Civic Center.

Everyone in city-run shelters, she said, is being either "sent to a permanent shelter or back to their homes if they can stay there. Riley said she didn't know what the current status of relocation numbers and that shelters were set to close once they were emptied out.

"What we're doing is taking people from temporary shelters and getting permanent shelters for the ones who need it," she said. "There are a lot of people who just got really scared and had only a minimum amount of water in their homes, but wanted to be out of harm's way. ... There are others whose homes were destroyed and they have to have more permanent types of shelter."

Mandatory evacuations are being performed in the area, and the Beaumont Enterprise reported Thursday that the city’s civic center was closing due to weather and being filled to capacity. 

“We will have to wait until the water levels from this historical flood recede before we can determine the extent of damage and make any needed repairs," a statement posted Thursday by the city of Beaumont reads. "There is no way to determine how long this will take at this time."

The Texas Tribune thanks its sponsors. Become one.

In a Facebook post, Beaumont Fire Rescue said that the city is working to restore the water supply “as soon as possible.” They recommended that residents shut down their water heating systems during the outage.

On Wednesday, the Louisiana National Guard flew into Beaumont and Port Arthur, roughly 30 miles away, with medical aid and supplies for the area hospitals.

Giulia Afiune contributed to this report.

Read related Tribune coverage:

  • Vice President Mike Pence and other members of President Trump's Cabinet — including Energy Secretary and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry — visited Texas on Thursday to see damage from Hurricane Harvey and meet with its victims. [Full story]

  • The meteorological firm AccuWeather estimates the storm's impact on gross domestic product will be $190 billion – one percent of the U.S.'s current GDP – and more costly than Katrina and Sandy combined. [Full story]

Get The Brief

Never miss a moment in Texas politics with our daily newsletter.