I hear we might get some rain this weekend. Maybe a little wind too.
I’ve been fairly nonchalant about all of this since most of these storms generally head north long before they reach Galveston/Houston. This time feels different. There’s more a sense of urgency this time. The weather guys say Rita will probably be a Category 4 when it hits (Update 09/21/05: Now it is).
Winds 131-155 mph (114-135 kt or 210-249 km/hr). Storm surge generally 13-18 ft above normal. More extensive curtainwall failures with some complete roof structure failures on small residences. Shrubs, trees, and all signs are blown down. Complete destruction of mobile homes. Extensive damage to doors and windows. Low-lying escape routes may be cut by rising water 3-5 hours before arrival of the center of the hurricane. Major damage to lower floors of structures near the shore. Terrain lower than 10 ft above sea level may be flooded requiring massive evacuation of residential areas as far inland as 6 miles (10 km). Hurricane Charley of 2004 was a Category Four hurricane made landfall in Charlotte County, Florida with winds of 150 mph.
Evidence of some initial panic can be witnessed all around town. I stopped at 4 gas stations on the way home tonight before I found one that had any gas left. They’re running out all over town.
The grocery stores are crazy too. Most don’t have any more bottled water or batteries and the shelves have been cleaned out.
County officials are suggesting there might be a possible evacuation of more than a million people.
Officials said between 800,000 and 1.2 million people could be asked or ordered to leave in the Houston area.
Talk about a mass exodus.
We’re most likely heading to Dallas Thursday, hoping and praying we have a house to return to this weekend.