UPDATE: Doña Ana County officials said Saturday afternoon that residents in La Union and adjacent areas who evacuated their homes because of flooding, voluntarily or involuntarily, must remain away from the area and their own homes until the Sheriff's Office announces that the area is safe enough for them to return.
Officials also advised people to avoid Koogle Road, between Tierra Vista Road and Alvarez Road, south of Macarena Avenue after that residential area, with approximately 50 homes, experienced heavy flooding and "infrastructure challenges."
ORIGINAL REPORT: LA UNION, New Mexico -- Mandatory evacuations were in effect Saturday for parts of La Union in southern New Mexico.
The evacuation impacts residents along Paloma Road and Golondrina Street. Dona Ana County Sheriff Kim Stewart tells the ABC-7 New Mexico Mobile Newsroom that mandatory evacuations began as of 7 a.m.
Residents were being evacuated to Anthony Elementary School at 600 N. Fourth Street in neighboring Anthony
The Dona Ana County Board of Commissioners on Friday unanimously approved a disaster declaration, asking New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham to declare a state of emergency due to flooding in La Union caused by severe weather.
Torrential rains pounded the area Thursday night, overflowing an earthen dam. That led to significant flooding as water gushed throughout the community, burying homes and vehicles in mud and making some roads impassable. By Saturday morning, rain kept falling with more precipitation in the forecast.