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Hurricane Ike Preparations

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* * * At midnight moving into Saturday, 9/13,
Ike’s eye should pass over our roof within about 4 hours
still at hurricane strength when it does.
* * *

Subscribe to aftermath’s Hurricane Ike Map RSS feed.

Most of my blogging on Hurricane Ike from here on out will be contained on notes under the markers on my personal tracking map. And I’ll keep this aftermath post sticky until the storm is history, building it through then.

[Image from OSEI showing Ike at 10am CDT on Wed 9/10]

No Evacuation – We will not be evacuating, even if Ike turns and comes straight at Houston. Rita cured us of any notions of that strategy being worth the effort.

Friday Off Work – I plan to take Friday (9/12) as one of my rare flex days off work and devote the time toward final preparations around the house. Susan’s employer will be closed Friday.

UH is closed as of 5pm Thursday 9/11, so Nat won’t have classes Friday. Normal UH classes and other campus activities are currently expected to resume on Monday 9/15. (So far I have not received a cell phone alert of the UH closing – yet another “emergency” web service not to be relied upon.)

Kelly‘s employer is paying heed to requests from local authorities to keep non-essential traffic off the roads in deference to evacuees, as of mid-day Thursday 9/11 advising Kelly and his colleagues to seek cancellation of all appointments through the rest of the week. A parent of one of his clients leaves a voice message on his Blackberry requesting acceleration of an appointment currently scheduled for next week to this Friday 9/12, since her child’s school has cancelled classes!?!?

Actual or Potential Cancellations – Weekend plans that have been or might be cancelled or affected by Ike:

  • WeddingSusan and I have plans to attend a wedding in Houston on Saturday evening (9/13).
  • UH FootballNat (and Lindsey) were scheduled to cheer at a home football game Saturday afternoon. Update – The UH football game has been moved to Dallas; cheerleaders will not go along.
  • Kitten SurgeriesBlue and Cuddles are scheduled for their neutering Saturday morning in a Galveston pet clinic. Since all of Galveston is under a mandatory evacuation order effective noon on Thursday 9/11, and since most if not all of Galveston might be flooded Saturday morning, we are guessing this appointment is cancelled, although they never called as promised and cannot be reached.


  • Medications – Do all household members have at least a week’s supply of all essential meds?
  • Automobile Gas – Although we do not plan to evacuate, we should still make sure all auto tanks are topped up before heading into this weekend. Still not completely prepared to handle shortages, local officials urge residents who don’t plan to evacuate to leave the gas for those who do, ignoring that all citizens should be prepared to move if conditions warrent.
  • Power Supplies – We have adequate fresh batteries for our one flashlight. We need to make sure all cell phones are adequately charged.
  • Spare Cash – Not that we’ll have anywhere to spend it if our neighborhood turns into the usual island, but ATM machines could be inoperable for a spell, so a few extra dollars in the wallet wouldn’t hurt.
  • Batten Down the Hatches – As of Friday 9/12 3pm, all the lawn furniture has been stored in the garage and everything else loose has been taken care of. My Blue Bug and Kelly’s truck are up on the driveway, off the street, which likely will be flooded by dawn Saturday.

Other Blog Posts – Previous aftermath posts relating to Ike:

Susan‘s posts relating to Ike:

News and Other Information

  • Tornado Watch – Issued a few minutes after 8pm Friday 9/12, extending through 10am Saturday morning.
  • Power Outages – Early Friday (9/11) afternoon, some 10,000 electricity customers are already estimated to be without power. If and when we lose power, I will continue posts by cell phone via Twitter, then will catch up on map posts, pictures and videos, and whatever else on the other side of the storm.
  • Curfew – Curfews will be in place for all mandatory evacuation zones (e.g., where Susan and I took our final pre-hurricane excursion around 2-3:30pm) through about 3-1/2 prior beginning 7pm on Friday, 9/12. Officials ask for all roads to be clear of traffic by 6:30pm, since they expect tropical force winds or higher to be coming in shortly thereafter.
  • Shortages – By noon Thursday 9/11, some local gas stations have run out of gasoline. And some grocery stores are out of basics, such as bottled water. Officials are issuing stern warnings against price gouging.
  • Contraflow When? – Many Houstonians still went into the workplace today (Thursday 9/11), so typically would need to get back before evacuating or hunkering down. For that and other reasons, Harris County has expressed that it would prefer to hold off opening contraflow traffic until after rush hour ends tonight (as in, circa 7-8pm?), if even necessary at that time. Their hand may be forced sooner. All major highways are looking clogged with evacuees by noon. Still not yet at Rita’s standstill, but since these 3-5mph lines will be extending for 50 miles or more before very long, wating until after dusk to open up contraflow will not work.
  • Mandatory Evacutions for Harris County Zones A and B – At a press conference at 7am Thursday 9/11, Houston Mayor White announced mandatory evacuation of zip codes in southern and eastern Harris County.
  • My current impression is that all local authorities suck vis a vis using the Internet to get evacuation and other essential information out. What good was it to set up that elaborate zip code evacuation zone process if a person was driving to work when that two-bit news conference was held at 7am this morning, then tries to find out anything on the computer once they’ve reached the office?
  • As we head to sleep late Wednesday, September 10, with Ike’s projected path creeping steadily back up toward Houston, reports of new mandatory evacuations up and down the shore trip over a flashflood of voluntary evacuation calls and press conferences and closures of schools and agencies and stores and gods know what else. Will tomorrow dawn on a Rita-like traffic jam sitting on all the highways out of town?
  • As of midday Wednesday, September 10, Galveston is reported to have advised voluntary evacuation of the western end of the island. Apparently, this information is not important enough to post on the official Galveston website.
  • Brazoria has ordered mandatory evacuation for shoreline citizens beginning Wednesday, September 10, 10am.


bumper sticker [] - mother nature

Written by macheide

10 September 2008 at 7:45 am


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