Hurricane Ike News & Information


12:30 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, September 24, 2008 Edition.

This page will list all of the current information we have about the impact of Hurricane Ike and the activities of our churches and ministries to provide relief.

Please note: this page is no longer being updated.

Summary

landfall_180w.jpgHurricane Ike made landfall at Galveston, Texas, at approximately 2:10 a.m. Saturday morning as a top-of-Category 2 hurricane with 110 m.p.h. sustained winds, but exhibited an unusually large wind field with hurricane force winds extending 120 miles from the center and tropical storm force winds extending out 275 miles. Ike moved out of Texas to the northeast by approximately 9:00 p.m. Saturday night.

When Ike moved out of Texas, instead of providing weather information, the coverage of this page was refocused on the relief work being done, volunteer opportunities, and church news. The weather information that was maintained on this page while Ike was an active storm threatening Texas has been moved to an archive page.

Click here to see the Ike Weather Information page.

Utility Situation on Wednesday

Reported 12:30 CDT, Wednesday

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Power Outages

Utility Situation On Monday

Reported 1:30 p.m. CDT, Monday

According to the Texas Public Utilities Commission website, restoration of critical utilities continues. We will continue to monitor electrical outages but this will be our last report on telcom outages.

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Electrical Outages

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Telcom Outages

Utility Situation On Saturday

Reported 6:30 p.m. CDT, Saturday

Restoration of critical utilities continues.

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Electrical Outages

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Telcom Outages

Vital Utility Situation Continues To Improve

Reported 11:30 a.m. CDT, Friday

As reported by the Texas Public Utilities Commission, the restoration of electrical and telcom utilities continues in the areas hit by Hurricane Ike. There is a lot of work left to do over a very large area. As you can see on the map, outages are not localized but are spread across a very large area. However, it is encouraging to see that steady progress is continuing.

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Electrical Outages

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Telcom Outages

New Volunteers Needed

Reported 7:30 p.m. CDT, Thursday

Volunteer Center of North Texas website reports (click here to go to the site):

  • The Greenbriar Community Center shelter in Fort Worth needs volunteers to help with cleanup at the shelter throughout the day -- shifts available. The also have shifts available to monitor the supply area, aid with distribution, and serve snacks.
  • In addition, Greenbriar needs MEN'S clothing in all sizes, men's shirts sizes 1X - 4X; and packages of new underwear sizes 34 and up. Call Shane or Olivia at 817-926-6214.
  • The Salvation Army needs volunteers seven days at week to answer hurricane-related calls at their headquarters at 6500 Harry Hines, corner of Harry Hines and Mockingbird. Five volunteers are needed for each of three shifts per day between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Volunteers may be as young as 16 if accompanied by parent.
  • Residents in the Harris County area are needed to volunteer at Points of Distribution Centers and at area nonprofits and shelters. To volunteer, call 713-853-8802 between 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. Agencies needing help may also call the volunteer line with their requests.
  • On Wednesday, September 17, more evacuees have been transferred to the North Texas area. Two more shelters have opened in Tarrant County and another in Ellis County. Weekday volunteers will be needed to serve three meals a day AT LEAST through Friday of this week, and we especially need volunteers for TARRANT COUNTY. We still have many unfilled slots.

 

Offical Fatalities Still Low, But ...

Reported at 4:00 p.m. CDT, Thursday

State search and rescue teams pulled out of Galveston on Wednesday after checking on almost 6,000 people and performing more than 3,500 rescues.

The death toll from Hurricane Ike in Texas is suspiciously low when one considers how many people may have stayed behind in the madatory evacuation areas, and how the storm obliterated so many homes close to the beach along a broad swath of the coast. Officials and search and rescue teams suspect there are more victims out there, and there has been some discussion that some may simply have been swept out to sea. There is no way for officials to know for sure who defied evacuation orders and stayed behind, so, for the time being, there is a lot of uncertainty. The number of people reported missing by family and friends is fluctuating.

As of Thursday afternoon the death toll stands in Texas at 22 and 56 overall in the U.S. 

The Power and Telcom Situation Improving

Reported 11:30 a.m. CDT, Thursday

According to the situation tracking website of the Texas Public Utilities Commission (see the report posted at 10:30 p.m. CDT, Wednesday below for details), the vital utilities damaged by Ike are being restored and the situation is improving. There is a lot of work left to do, but the situation is getting better.

First, progress is being made on restoring electrical power. Compare the map below with the map posted at 10:30 p.m. last night (further down on this page).

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Electrical Outage

Second, the telcom situation is even better. Communications are being restored quickly.

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Telcom Outage

We will continue to monitor and report on the utilities situation.

Impressive Collection of Ike Damage Photos

Reported at 11:30 a.m. CDT, Thursday

Alicia Teeter, TeleWorship's copy editor, found that the www.boston.com website had an impressive collection of new photos from the wire services and pool reporters. This is one of the best sets of photos we've seen.

Click here to see the photos.

Texas PUC Maps Power Outages by County

Reported 10:30 p.m. CDT, Wednesday

The Texas Public Utilities Commission has put up a website to track power outages and restoral of electrical service in counties affected by Hurricane Ike. See http://www.puc.state.tx.us/files/ike.cfm. In addition to a summary map of the status of each county, the site has links to the service restoration websites of each electric company with their projections of restoral dates.

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Before and After Photos of Bolivar Peninsula, Texas

Reported 9:30 p.m. CDT, Tuesday

Below are oblique aerial photographs of Bolivar Peninsula, Texas, from the U.S. geological survey taken on September 9, 2008 (top) and September 15, 2008, two days after the landfall of Hurricane Ike (bottom). To see a larger image, simply click on each thumbnail photo.

 Location 1

 Location 2

Location 3 

Location 4 

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Locations index for photo pairs of Bolivar Peninsula, Texas. The green line represents the storm track of Hurricane Ike. (From USGS)

Bits of News

Reported 11:45 a.m. CDT, Monday

FCC, Texas City lost the roof of the educational bldg.

Orange, TX underwater...have not heard from anyone there.

FCC, Port Arthur has water in the building (again) and holes in office roof.

Seabrook, Herb's home church, is an island...have not heard about Taylor Lake.

Galveston in horrible condition.

Beaumont reports wind damage and fallen trees but pretty good on the whole.

First report from Coretha Loughridge, Area Minister in the Northeast Area:

Reported 11:45 a.m. CDT, Monday

"I've been in touch with about 12 of our congregations so far, and most are reporting the main issue as power outages.  All of our church facilities weathered the storm, as did our people.  There are several church members who have suffered some damage to their homes, but not catastrophic. 

The two shelters in Nacogdoches were closed yesterday.  The one we have going at our Hispanic congregation in Kaufman still has 47 evacuees, and they are taking showers at the pastor's home, along with other church members!!  The operations center at First Lufkin is still operational, and they have 75-100 DPS officers sleeping in their Fellowship Hall."

From First Christian Church of Port Arthur

Reported at 10:00 p.m CDT, Saturday.

FCC Port Arthur was damaged by Ike.  Here's an update tonight from Rev. Scott Wallace, the senior pastor:
 
"We have heard from a few people about the church. We have lost the carport on the classroom side (the one the staff uses). There is some water in the building again. It looks like one of the eves of the church came up but not off. Gym is dry. The kitchen has some water in it and room 202.  The report also says there are two 18" holes in the office area."
 
Scott Wallace, Senior Pastor

From Herb Lynskey, Coastal Plains Area Minister

Reported at 1:30 p.m CDT, Saturday.

From a text message from Herb who is at Lake Livingston:
 
"80-100 mph winds at lake as we speak....bkhead looks like seawall in galveston...no power...water blowing in on all windows facing storm...one window blown out of its track...lake looks like gulf....8-10 waves on lake"

From Brenda Warren, Pastor at FCC, Beaumont

Reported at 1:30 p.m CDT, Saturday.

Hello:

Well, it was a wild night here in Beaumont and our yard looks as bad as Hurricane Rita. The carport is down on top of Harvey's car and there are trees down and snapped all over our yard. We can't get out of the driveway because there are trees across it. Hurricane winds are still blowing at 7:30 a.m. The electricity went out about 11:30 p.m. and the hurricane force winds began about 1:30 a.m. and still continue. So far, no trees on the house though...yeh!

I heard on our little wind-up radio that Berkshire (the street close to the church) is devastated with trees down, but it is going to be awhile until we can get over to the church to check it out. When the winds stop blowing, Harvey will probably ride his bicycle over there since we can't get out of the driveway. Hopefully the rental car I have from after the car accident is ok.

We have a generator running a light and trying to keep the computer and cell phones charged.

If you evacuated, it would probably be best to stay there awhile as Entergy is telling us that it may be weeks (that's their word!) until all the electricity is back on because about 2 million customers are without electricity.

Church members, you have my cell phone (409-790-2726). I can probably get email also as the Verizon tower seems to still be up.

Let us all be in prayer together and we know that the presence of God surrounds us even in the very difficult places.

Blessings,
Pastor Brenda

From Texas Interfaith Disaster Recovery in Austin

Reported at 1:30 p.m CDT, Saturday.

Dear Friends,

We knew this would be a massive storm.  Today and over the next few days we will learn of the destruction caused and find more and more ways to respond.  Please keep evacuees and the many communities affected across our great state--in your prayers.  And let's all stay in touch so that by working together we can coordinate the many gifts and resources that will be needed.

I thank the many of you who have helped evacuees, our guests, in some very creative ways!  Keep the creativity flowing.

Sincerely,

Amy Elder, Executive Director

Emergency Appeal for CWS Kits

Reported at 12:00 p.m CDT, Saturday.

As Hurricane Ike continues to grow and focus its wrath on the Texas coast, Church World Service (CWS) needs assistance in meeting the needs of those affected by this and other disasters. In the last 30 days, CWS has provided dozens of shipments of CWS Blankets, CWS Hygiene Kits, CWS Baby Kits and CWS Emergency Cleanup Buckets. CWS Kits have helped flood survivors in Iowa, displaced persons from the Russia-Georgia conflict and Hurricanes Hannah, Gustav and Ike.

These items provide immediate, important relief to those coping with disaster. Displaced from their homes, disaster-affected individuals rely on CWS resources after being forced from their homes with little more than the clothes on their backs.

Preparing CWS Kits is a tangible way local churches, community groups and others may help people in need. All kits are assembled using common household items. Click below to find out how to prepare and deliver help to someone in need.

Week of Compassion has sent an emergency grant of $6,000 to help CWS restock its supply of kits for the many requests we are now receiving from the hurricanes and the additional requests that are sure to come in the next several days. In the meanwhile, Week of Compassion urges Disciples congregations to help us meet the demand for additional kits, especially hygiene kits, baby kits and cleanup kits. Thank you!

Week of Compassion Needs Funds!

Reported at 12:00 p.m. Saturday.

Johnny Wray, director of Week of Compassion, tells us that funds to respond to Hurricane Ike are running critically low. The best response for NTA Disciples churches to Ike would be to take a special offering for Ike relief and send it to the Week of Compassion. The Red Cross is also appealing for funds.

Click herefor details and more information. 

From the NCH

Reported at 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

The National Hurricane Center reports radar data and surface observations indicated that the center of Ike made landfall at Galveston, Texas, about 2:10 a.m. CDT.

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11 Shelters Have Been Opened in North Texas

Reported 3:00 p.m. Friday.

Volunteer Center of North Texas reports that as of 2:00 p.m. today, eleven (11) shelters have been opened in North Texas and they still need hundreds of volunteers to help. Please read their message below and respond if you can.

Message from the Volunteer Center of North Texas

Reported 12:30 p.m. Friday.

Greetings all,

The Volunteer Center of North Texas is charged with scheduling volunteers for shelters run by area municipalities, as well as for the American Red Cross and The Salvation Army.
 
We have just been notified by Harris County to expect 10,000 - 15,000 evacuees from that county alone, and 288 buses are already underway.  As of this morning, the state is asking up to a million people to take shelter inland from the coast. Evacuation orders have already been issued for Harris, Galveston, Brazoria, Jefferson, Orange, and Matagorda counties.  Hurricane Ike will apparently be much more severe than Gustav, and volunteers will be needed beginning as soon as buses arrive in the North Texas area.
 
Calling all volunteers! Students 16 or older, parents, and teachers who can help in this relief effort should call the Volunteer Center at 1-866-797-8268 for more information about how to help. Weekend volunteer shifts will be available for clerical, phone bank, and warehouse work at the Volunteer Center and the American Red Cross, Dallas chapter.
 
If you represent a youth group that can volunteer, please call the above number to let us know the number of volunteers and your availability for scheduling.
 
Individuals who want to volunteer specifically at shelters must pass a criminal background check, and should go to our website, www.vcnt.org, where they will be directed to an online volunteer application form. After filling out the form and submitting it to the Volunteer Center, they will be contacted as needed.
 
If you have any additional questions, please call the Volunteer Center toll-free at 1-866-797-8268 or visit us online at www.vcnt.org.
 
Thank you for your assistance with this urgent community need!

Millicent

Message from Johnny Wray at Week of Compassion

Reported 12:30 p.m. Friday.

Friends – just to let you know – so you can let your pastors and congregations know – the WOC is ready to assist congregations (and\or local efforts our congregations may be supporting) that are sheltering evacuees.

Take care,

jww

Hurricane Ike Relief Volunteer Opportunities

Reported 7:30 p.m., Thursday.

For voluntary agencies or organizations, including faith-based and community groups, who wish to assist with volunteer efforts in disaster response and recovery, please contact your state Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) point-of-contact at http://www.nvoad.org/AboutUs/StateVOADs/tabid/76/Default.aspx.

Opportunity #1

Through VOAD, the Red Cross Dallas needs 10 volunteers to drive box trucks and help with loading and unloading.  Report to Dallas Area Chapter.  Must be able to lift 50 pounds. Contact Marty at 469-628-4166. 

Opportunity #2

The Red Cross is recruiting GROUPS of volunteers to work the chapter phone bank at 4800 Harry Hines. A group works together on shifts. A church group from a single church is a good example. Contact Rachel Leventon's cellphone at 214-681-7487.

Opportunity #3

The 211 Information Center in Arlington is looking for volunteers to take shifts manning phones and giving information to people in need as they seek refuge. Here is their release:

“As you are well aware, Hurricane Ike is quickly approaching the Texas coastline and the 2-1-1 Warm Center has once again been activated. Ike is currently a Category One but will strengthen as it comes further into the Gulf of Mexico. The current forecast show Ike making landfall in Texas late Friday night into Saturday morning.

With safety concerns and evacuations eminent, 2-1-1 staff has been inundated with calls and we are looking for community volunteers to assist in staffing the call center. At this point, volunteers are needed through Sunday for the times shown below. Please consider volunteering your time and feel free to forward this email to any family, friends or neighbors who could assist during this critical time. Training will be provided at the Warm Center by our 2-1-1 professionals and light snacks/drinks will be available.

2-1-1 Warm Center
401 W. Sanford Street
Suite 2600
Arlington TX 76011-7072


Please contact Veronica Palacios at: 817-258-8058 or with the day/time you are able to volunteer. Available shifts are:

Wednesday,  September 10

7am-11am
11am-3pm
3pm-7pm
7pm-11pm 


Thursday,  September 11

7am-11am
11am-3pm
3pm-7pm
7pm-11pm      


Friday, September 12

7am-11am
11am-3pm
3pm-7pm
7pm-11pm      


Saturday, September 13

7am-11am
11am-3pm
3pm-7pm
7pm-11pm      


Sunday, September 14

7am-11am
11am-3pm
3pm-7pm
7pm-11pm      


Thank you for your continued work in our community and we hope you will be able to assist us during this critical time.”

Local Shelter Relief Efforts

Reported 7:30 p.m., Thursday.

As reported on Thursday, September 11, 2008 - Local municipalities, the Red Cross, and The Salvation Army are setting up shelters for evacuees from the Gulf Coast throughout North Texas.

Evacuees are currently being received at the Dallas Convention Center. Nearly 300 buses are expected to arrive today in the North Texas area, with 10-15,000 total possibly needing shelter in our communities.

Volunteers are needed now and for the next several days, both at the shelters and to work at phone banks, administrative offices, and warehouses of the American Red Cross, The Salvation Army, the North Texas Food Bank and the Volunteer Center of North Texas.

The Volunteer Center of North Texas is scheduling all volunteers for these organizations. Organizations that can provide groups of volunteers should call 1-866-797-8268 for information.

Volunteers who wish to volunteer inside shelters must undergo a criminal background check. Please follow the instructions below to apply.

Here's how the organizations will coordinate the local shelter efforts:

The North Texas Food Bank will provide food for meal preparation. At this time, they are not actively seeking food donations, but monetary donations are always needed.

The Salvation Army will provide meals at all mass shelter locations.

The American Red Cross will manage and oversee shelter operations.

The Volunteer Center of North Texas will coordinate volunteer placement for the relief effort.

Federal Resources

Ready.gov Hurricane Preparation Information:
http://www.ready.gov/america/beinformed/hurricanes.html

Department of Commerce/NOAA's National Hurricane Center:
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/#GUSTAV

SBA Disaster Loan Information:
http://www.sba.gov/hurricanes/index.html

IRS Tax Relief During Disasters:
http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=108362,00.html

Citizen Corps:
www.citizencorps.gov 

Need to Apply for Assistance?

To apply for individual or public assistance, see www.fema.gov/assistance/index.shtmor call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).