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Now, that hurricanes have gotten everyone's attention, and riding out a storm seems to have lost some of its' cache, Houstonians might want to keep an eye on this one.

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_a...1209.shtml?5day

With the accuracy of the National Hurricane Center's predictions lately, seeing Houston right in the middle of the NHC Blob is a bit disconcerting, to say the least. I was hoping we would not have to put Katrina's lessons to use so quickly.

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Long-range forecasts showed the system moving into the Gulf of Mexico late in the week as a hurricane, then possibly approaching Mexico or Texas.

But forecasters warned those across the U.S. southern coast that long-term predictions are subject to large errors. That means that areas ravaged by Katrina should be watching the storm.

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I bought a whole bunch of supplies today. I know areas of the Woodlands flooded during Allison, I have not clue what will happen in our area though.

But considering that a lightening bolt took out 8 counties earlier this summer, who knows what this thing will do............ :unsure:

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In a cat 4 -5 storm they would have a mandatory evacuation for Galveston and probaly Clear Lake. I think you would be OK in downtown - I live on the in a loft downtown and I would ride it out. I live on the 5th floor so I won't have to worry about flooding, and downtown would most likely be the 1st to restore power.

I believe the Sring area would be the furthest north you need to go in order to evacuate. They will get a lot of wind damage (tree down, roofs torn up), but should escape they brunt force of the storm.

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Having never been through a Hurricane (Im a Michigan transplant)...if a cat 4-5 does hit Houston/Galveston - will there be mandatory evacuations?  I assume Galveston will, but what about downtown area?  How far north do you have to go ?

this is not a particularly good map, but it will give you an idea of whether or not you should plan to leave if the predicted path holds, along with evacuation routes.

hurricane evacuation map

it will be at least late wednesday before they have a better idea, the voluntary evacuation for galveston now is to try and urge those who can leave (retirees) to do so now to ease the mandatory evacuation if they need one.

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What im worried about is - if it does hit Houston - people in Apartments (anywhere for that matter) buying gas powerd generators and then the people who dont know enough about them would somehow cause a fire - or if nothing else asphixiate themselves. Thats a real concern. Not to mention - power. But what can you expect.

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Yeah, I hope it doesnt cause to much trouble, I wonder what the evacuee's are thinking. it would suck if they were evacuated evacuees, ha.

But, I hope noone gets hurt.

It looks like Mother Nature is trying to finish the job. :huh:

Just a joke, but if it hits Houston it will look like the refugees were born under a bad sign and brought their bad voodoo mojo along with them. In that case, we're all screwed.

Really though, I haven't been through one of these so my questions are;

1) When they predict a target in the Gulf 5 or 6 days out, like us, how often are they correct, give or take 100 miles or so?

2) I'm considering buying plywood tonight. I stopped by Home Depot a half hour ago and people are buying it. Premature? Unneccesary this far inland (East End/Gulfgate)? I figure I can always take it back if I never end up installing it.

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I hope that thing doesn't hit anywhere near Houston. Do you guys know what will happen if it does? It will be just like what happened to New Orleans, Houston would loss all of its population, and there would be nothing worth left to come back to.

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I hope that thing doesn't hit anywhere near Houston. Do you guys know what will happen if it does? It will be just like what happened to New Orleans, Houston would loss all of its population, and there would be nothing worth left to come back to.

It won't be anything like NO. We have no levees like NO. We are at least 50 feet above sea level in downtown. The cat 5 evacuation area ends at 610 East. Here's the map:

http://www.hcoem.org/Hurricane%20Evacuation%20Map.pdf

I would beware of high winds, however. If you would feel more comfortable, you may want to board up and head north or northwest for safer lodging. We are going to board up if the storm track remains on a bee-line for West Beach beyond Wednesday. At that time I will be packing up the husband and cats and heading to deep East texas for refuge at the in-laws. That in itself may end up being a hell on earth as it is. :lol:

B)

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It looks like Mother Nature is trying to finish the job.  :huh:

Just a joke, but if it hits Houston it will look like the refugees were born under a bad sign and brought their bad voodoo mojo along with them. In that case, we're all screwed.

Really though, I haven't been through one of these so my questions are;

1) When they predict a target in the Gulf 5 or 6 days out, like us, how often are they correct, give or take 100 miles or so?

2) I'm considering buying plywood tonight. I stopped by Home Depot a half hour ago and people are buying it. Premature? Unneccesary this far inland (East End/Gulfgate)? I figure I can always take it back if I never end up installing it.

danax,

The 5 day predictions are experimental, so they can be off up to 270 miles either direction. That being said, the forecasters get better every year. Katrina was pretty damn close to dead on. Additionally, the computer models that several researchers have developed, all point to the Houston metro, with the exception of one, which aims at South Padre. We'll know in about 2 days.

As to plywood, it never hurts to buy early. You can even spend your time cutting them to fit, marking which one goes where, and saving them for future use. Be sure to get 5/8 inch thickness, and place your screws every 12 inches around the window frame. Drill 3 or 4 holes in the middle, so it can breathe. The plywood is only to deflect projectiles, not waterproofing.

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danax,

The 5 day predictions are experimental, so they can be off up to 270 miles either direction.  That being said, the forecasters get better every year.  Katrina was pretty damn close to dead on.  Additionally, the computer models that several researchers have developed, all point to the Houston metro, with the exception of one, which aims at South Padre.  We'll know in about 2 days.

As to plywood, it never hurts to buy early.  You can even spend your time cutting them to fit, marking which one goes where, and saving them for future use.  Be sure to get 5/8 inch thickness, and place your screws every 12 inches around the window frame.  Drill 3 or 4 holes in the middle, so it can breathe.  The plywood is only to deflect projectiles, not waterproofing.

Thanks, Redscare. That's the info I'm looking for. I was considering OSB but guess I'll have to spend some bucks.

Well then, if they're within 270 most likely, we're still going to be in for a major storm but that would be something we could stick around and watch, I'm presuming.

I'm not going to gamble on plywood being available Wed. so will buy tomorrow.

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danax,

The 5 day predictions are experimental, so they can be off up to 270 miles either direction.  That being said, the forecasters get better every year.  Katrina was pretty damn close to dead on.  Additionally, the computer models that several researchers have developed, all point to the Houston metro, with the exception of one, which aims at South Padre.  We'll know in about 2 days.

As to plywood, it never hurts to buy early.  You can even spend your time cutting them to fit, marking which one goes where, and saving them for future use.  Be sure to get 5/8 inch thickness, and place your screws every 12 inches around the window frame.  Drill 3 or 4 holes in the middle, so it can breathe.  The plywood is only to deflect projectiles, not waterproofing.

What kind of cost can one expect on the plywood? Additionally, if you have a stucco finish - how does one locate the right place to drill? Our window frames are metal...

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What kind of cost can one expect on the plywood?  Additionally, if you have a stucco finish - how does one locate the right place to drill?  Our window frames are metal...

Do an experiment with a 2"-3" screw about 3/4" away from the exposed aluminum. Your windows are most likely framed with 2 x 4's so there is wood under there somewhere. Make sure your screws are long enough to penetrate through the stucco and at least half way through the wood. I use 3" screws as I have to go through 2 layers of 1/2" plywood, 1/2" of siding and another 1/2" of sheathing.

I don't know what current plywood costs are as we bought plywood specificly for storm protection about 5 years ago. We use 2 layers of 1/2" because a 2x4 propelled at 75 MPH has proven to penetrate one layer of 1/2" but not 2.

And don't forget to do what Red said: drill a few holes through the middle portion of the plywood so the wood has some give.

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Not to sound shallow--

But what would the effects of a CAT 3 or CAT 4 storm's winds on all that glass on Houston's skyscrapers?

I heard that Alicia knocked out a lot of glass and Katrina picked over a few buildings in NOLA (especially that Hyatt). Did Alicia leave DT looking like Fort Worth after the tornado a few years back? Just curious.

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nmain, are you planning to board up?  I haven't decided if I need to yet.  Plus, I have 19 windows, so the plywood bill would be way up there.  Plywood was $20-25 a sheet before Katrina.  No telling what it is now.

We're waiting until Wednesday but yeah, we'll board up if it looks like we'll get a direct hit. We have 16 windows, one front door, 2 sets of french doors and a huge glass block wall.

We bought our plywood [2 layers of 4' x 8' x 1/2"] at approx $12 a sheet 5 years ago. I wouldn't be surprised if it hasn't doubled since then. I kinda figured it would pay off some day so we stored it in a rack from our garage ceiling. At the time one of my sisters joked we were homosexually anal retentive at the time. :lol:

Who's laughing now?

B)

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  Katrina was pretty damn close to dead on. 

Not true when the storm was east of Florida (where Rita is now). I remember all the projected paths showing it going into the Florida panhandle, mostly east of Pensacola.

Then Katrina went southward after passing the Keys and the new projections showed it going to New Orleans. Those were correct.

So the bottom line is that we need to wait until Rita is in the Gulf before we can have a good forecast.

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>>We use 2 layers of 1/2" because a 2x4 propelled at 75 MPH has proven to penetrate one layer of 1/2" but not 2.

And don't forget to do what Red said: drill a few holes through the middle portion of the plywood so the wood has some give.

You can also sandwich a sheet of Tyvek between the sheets of plywood. This is the same stuff that they wrap houses with and fabricate FedEx packages out of.

It has a cross-hatching fibre weave that helps it resist punctures.

Home Depot should have it.

http://www.tyvek.com/whatistyvek.htm

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nmain, are you planning to board up?  I haven't decided if I need to yet.  Plus, I have 19 windows, so the plywood bill would be way up there.  Plywood was $20-25 a sheet before Katrina.  No telling what it is now.

what are your thoughts about midtown? We have about 20 windows roughly in a townhome - corner unit. Judging by what i'm hearing, this could be one heck of an event.

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