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Ike evacuees coming from Tyler to Tarrant

After riding out Hurricane Ike in Tyler, 800 evacuees are headed to Tarrant County-area shelters due to overcrowding in Tyler, city officials said Sunday.

Fort Worth and Arlington also announced Sunday afternoon that more shelters were being opened in the west Metroplex area to relieve crowding in other facilities around the state.

Only 11 of the 23 available shelters in the four-county area working with the city of Fort Worth have been activated, said Brian Chatman, a city spokesman. He said the 23 shelters have a capacity of a little more than 2,000.

There were 852 evacuees in shelters in the four-county area, which consists of Tarrant, Wise, Hood and Johnson counties, about 3 p.m. Sunday.

The Tyler group was beginning to arrive at the Wilkerson-Greines Activity Center, but other buses were still departing the Tyler area about 3 p.m. Sunday, Chatman said.

Michael Nimocks, a city spokesman, said about 200 from Tyler shelters are expected to be sent to Arlington, which will fill the city's volunteer shelters to capacity.

About 254 people are already staying at Grace Community Church and North Davis Church of Christ in Arlington, he said. According to Fort Worth city officials, 379 are staying in Fort Worth community centers.