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31 August 2006

On tropical storms and disappointments

First of all, let me say that I'm not pro-hurricane.  I mean, I love The Hurricanes, but I hate the devastation caused by hurricanes.

Nonetheless, I'm still fascinated by them.  I've been here in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina since 1998 now, and there hasn't been a real hurricane here since 1996 when Hurricane Fran rolled up I-40 from Wilmington and was still a hurricane when the eye of the storm passed over the area.

Fran was pretty devastating, with lots of flooding and such.  My sister lived in Cary at the time and said it was quite a long night.

Well here we are in the early stages of the 2006 hurricane season, and Tropical Storm Ernesto is about to make landfall near the border between north and south carolina, and then travel up into North Carolina.

Erin is somewhat excited about her first hurricane, but it's really not going to do much here but rain and get no worse than "a little breezy' I suspect.

After last night's downpour and today's rain, I dumped about 2.5" out of the rain gauge.  We'll see what we get tonight.  My rain gauge only goes up to 3 inches, unfortunately.

The worst tropical weather I've seen around here was actually from the remnants of Tropical Storm Gaston, which passed directly over us, or maybe just a little bit west.  I was driving to work in that mess and it was quite nasty.  Not like a hurricane, but I'm telling you, they said it wasn't a tropical storm anymore but it emerged off the coast of North Carolina and almost immediately regained its strength.  It was pretty gusty went it went through here!

Anyway, I've got another blog entry to post on another topic, so I guess I'll cut this one off.

Stay dry!

Posted by rickroot at 7:09 PM | Link | 0 comments
19 September 2005

is Galveston the next New Orleans?

We all know that New Orleans was extremely vulnerable to the kind of catastrophe that occurred when Hurricane Katrina came ashore a few weeks ago.  Now that New Orleans is slowly recovering (I heard at least one bar on Bourbon Street was open), let's make sure we don't forget that the hurricane season peaks on September 15.  We're barely over half way through!

Now it looks like Tropical Storm Rita - which is expected to increase in strength rapidly as it approaches the Florida Keys - is going to make a path through the Gulf of Mexico and make landfall somewhere on the coast of Texas.

Forecasts 5 days out of course are not particularly accurate, but the center of the national hurricane center's current forecast track takes Rita on shore just south of Galveston.

The Weather Channel web site has a list of vulnerable cities, one of which is Galveston.  Galveston is the site of the worst natural disaster in U.S. history - at least in terms of lives lost.  A category 4 hurricane roared ashore there in 1900 and over 20,000 people lost their lives.

Here's hoping we don't see anything like Katrina again in our lifetimes.

Posted by rickroot at 6:52 PM | Link | 1 comment