In Houston we now greet each other with “Do you have power yet?”
The answer is still usually no unless you live on the West side of town. Anything along and East of I-45 took a pretty hard hit. Much of that area, especially parts South of the 610 Loop, will be without power until sometime late September or early October. Amazingly, power outages extend up to the Lufkin area and East past Baton Rouge Louisiana. The CenterPoint restoration map will give you a pretty good feel for Ike’s path.
My family in Clear Lake continues to live without power but they were well prepared. They bought a large generator, window unit air conditioner, and a supply of gas before the storm hit. I was well prepared as well but all of my services were restored quickly. One of the advantages of living downtown is that restoration of service to your area will be a relatively high priority.
Gas has been a major problem for many. Lines aren’t as long but they’re still there. I pass by many closed stations every day. I don’t know if a lack of fuel, power, or both is to blame. This issue hasn’t really been an impact for me either. I filled up my SUV before the storm and limited travel as much as possible to conserve fuel. I have been driving to work since Wednesday but I live within 5 miles of my office. I don’t know what people who commute long distances are doing but they must be pretty miserable.
Those of you in Houston, or surrounding areas, who’d like to help with the relief effort can find a list of places that need your help at one of the Houston Chronicle’s blogs. I hope the rest of you will consider making some kind of donation to the American Red Cross. They are going to have their hands full for a very long time. We all will.
Glenn Reynolds asks “Why do hurricanes that hit Texas get so much less attention than hurricanes that hit New Orleans?”