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Blogging Tropical Storm Edouard

8/4/08–4:45 PM: Tropical Storm Edouard is— quite possibly—heading for Galveston, Houston and surrounding areas. Tomorrow morning is the expected arrival time for the brunt of the storm.  As it stands, a strong tropical storm or a “weak” hurricane is projected.   

I live in Houston and I’m going to blog about the storm and about hurricanes today and tomorrow. I’ll update this post as I go along. If the power goes out, or during a thunderstorm with lightning, then I will not be blogging at those times.  

Eric Berger’s SciGuy blog at the Houston Chronicle is providing good updates on the storm.

The National Weather Service has the forecast.

The Galveston County Daily News is covering the story.

Here is a list of supplies you need in case of a hurricane

While it is easy to dismiss this storm because it is not as big as Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Rita, or because forecasts about these storms have been wrong in the past, it is still a serious matter.

Here are facts about driving in high water—

Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars causing loss of control and possible stalling. 

A foot of water will float many vehicles.

Two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles including sport utility vehicles (SUV’s) and pick-ups.

Here are further guidelines from FEMA about flood conditions.

Stay out of high water. That is the upshot. 

Here is information from NOAA about what a hurricane is exactly. Just about any question you could think of is addressed.

5:25 PM—Chronicle Science blogger Eric Berger suggests the storm may take a turn to the north and not impact the Houston/Galveston area to the extent now predicted. This would be good for Houston, but might lead to trouble for some of the same areas hit by Hurricane Rita in 2005.

7:40 PM—If the storm does hit Galveston, it is likely the Galveston Seawall will be up to the test of keeping the Gulf of Mexico from doing much damage to the city.  The Seawall was built in the aftermath of the 1900 Galveston hurricane. It has done its job well.

There are people in Galveston who live outside the protection of the Seawall. That is up to them to do so.

Below is the Seawall in 1910.

The Seawall - Galveston, TX

10:22 PM— An updated forecast moves the storm to the east to some degree though the National Weather Service still has the storm making landfall in the area of Galveston Bay

The TV weather people say the storm will be bad if it is bad, and less bad if it is less bad. They cover every base. It might go one way unless it goes another way.

I think the local TV stations would create hurricanes in labs and release them into the atmosphere in order to get ratings.

8/5/08–8:18 AMThe storm landed to the north of Houston and we’ll get a rainy windy day. Not much more. Hopefully nobody will be hurt and property damage will be mild.

It does not appear this topic merits much more effort. I’ll be off now to other concerns.

August 4, 2008 Posted by | Galveston, Houston, Texas | , , , , | Leave a comment

Good News—Tropical Storm Warning Pushes Out Air Quality Alert

A tropical storm warning in Houston has apparently pushed out the air quality alert from earlier in the day. The National Weather Service forecast for Houston no longer makes mention of the bad air. Though it does make ample mention of the prospect of big rain and possibly some wind.

The storm is named Edouard.

Here is the forecast for Houston for the next couple of days—

Monday: A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny and hot, with a high near 99. Heat index values as high as 104. North wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east.

Monday Night: Tropical storm conditions possible. A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 77. East wind 5 to 10 mph increasing to between 15 and 20 mph. Winds could gust as high as 30 mph.

Tuesday: Tropical storm conditions possible. Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 90. Heat index values as high as 101. East wind 40 to 50 mph becoming east 15 to 20 mph. Winds could gust as high as 70 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.

None of this bothers me so much as long as people don’t get hurt. But I’m aberrant in a lot of ways. You see from that forecast why normal people elsewhere in the country sometimes see Houston as a kind of hell.

August 4, 2008 Posted by | Houston | , , | 3 Comments