September 15, 2008
Monday Ike roundup

The good news is that so far there have been very few fatalities from Hurricane Ike. The bad news is just about everything else.

Federal emergency workers today opened six Houston-area distribution sites for food and water, with plans to open 11 more before day's end.

Continental and other major airlines resumed flights from Bush Intercontinental and car rental agencies were open. All freeways into downtown again were driveable.

Slowly, haltingly but undeniably, Houston today was coming back to life as unseasonably cool temperatures made the hard recovery a little more bearable.

Just a day after Hurricane Ike humbled America's high-flying energy capital, millions of people across southeast Texas wearily confronted a stunning reality Sunday: Millions of lives have been dismantled indefinitely by the loss of everything from power and water, to property and even people.

The storm seemingly spared no one, with at least seven fatalities in Texas so far, floodwaters, fallen trees, and shortages of power, water and ice affecting every community from Galveston to Beaumont, Houston to Surfside, The Woodlands to Pearland. Ike also destroyed a number of production platforms and damaged pipelines in the Gulf of Mexico, exasperating a rebuilding effort that is expected to top $10 billion.

The hundreds of thousands of people who evacuated before the hurricane still didn't know the extent of the damage to their homes or even when they could return, and many of those who stayed went through another rainy day Sunday without electricity. Overwhelmed public officials, meanwhile, raised questions about when the federal government would get supplies to the people most in need.

The death toll includes three in the battered barrier island city of Galveston. With the hurricane transforming the popular destination into a debris-covered ghost town, Mayor Lyda Ann Thomas warned residents to stay away, possibly for weeks, until the most pressing services are restored.

We still don't really know what will be in store for us when we try to fly home on Thursday. I think our flight will be allowed to actually happen, and at least I know our house is okay. Beyond that? I just don't know.

Some links and other items of interest related to Ike that I've found:

Various photos of Hurricane Ike's handiwork, from inside the loop, Crystal Beach, Yale Street in the Heights, and Seabrook.

Greg reports that Metro is running bus routes again, and gives an update on downtown.

Banjo links to some Ike survivor stories.

Texas Education has a comprehensive list of school district and college closings in the area, including Louisiana.

The Chron has a database of places where power has been restored.

WayneDo versus Governor Perry. Someone needs to sell tickets to that.

Please donate to the Red Cross.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on September 15, 2008 to Hurricane Katrina
Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)