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How We’re Preparing for Hurricane Harvey

How We’re Preparing for Hurricane Harvey

If you’re also in Harvey’s path, please, please, please exercise wisdom

Sitting here, blogging from my home breaks in Houston, which is currently on the dirty side of Hurricane Harvey.

My brother-in-law’s family evacuated from the coast yesterday to dryer ground inland.

As these things go, no one is entirely sure what to expect, but wisdom always suggests we prepare for the worst.

Some models show the storm making landfall as a category 3 possibly even 4 where it will park for a few days then stroll up the Gulf Coast to make landfall again just outside of Houston as a category 2. Needless to say, if models are in any way accurate, this is one nasty piece of work.

This is one incredible storm:

We don’t live in a flood plain, so that shouldn’t be a concern for us, though with these things you never know.

But we’re prepared. We have enough food, water, ice, booze, batteries, diapers, dog food, and supplies to get us through the end of next week, maybe a little more. And because I know not everyone is prudent, have a little extra for others in case it’s needed.

We’ve moved outside furniture to the garage, taken down clothes lines, rolled up Old Glory, and brought in the bird feeders, leaving me a little anxious for our backyard hummingbirds. I hope they find a safe place to wait out the storm.

My husband and I are both native Houstonians, so this is not our first major hurricane, but as he observed last night, it’s the first for many new residents. Ten, even fifteen years ago, most everyone here was born and raised Houstonian stock. Now, not so much. It seems we never meet fellow natives these days.

As locals and long-time Gulf Coast residents know, this is just part of coastal living. As my dear friend and Galveston native explained:

The beer is an absolute must. Or if not beer, then a Harvey Wallbanger seems appropriate here.

If this happens to be your first storm, please, please, please exercise wisdom, caution, and extreme prudence. Listen to city officials for guidance, not random internet info. Official city release is here.

If you’re not in an evacuation area and can stay inside, do. If you don’t know how high the water is, DO NOT DRIVE THROUGH IT. According to the National Hurricane Center 9 out of 10 deaths in a storm’s aftermath occur in a vehicle. There’s still time to gather supplies before this evening, but you best make haste. And if you need help, ask. As I was gathering storm preparations yesterday, baby strapped to me, no less than 6 people volunteered help. Texas, Louisiana, and the Gulf Coast is full of amazing people, willing to help.

We’re prepared but not anxious and informed but not worried. We’ve prayed and continue to pray Psalms 91 over our family, our home, and over all of those in the path of Hurricane Harvey.

If you are in Harvey’s path, we’re praying for you too.

Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekaye


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Please be careful down there, Ms. Kaye.

Good luck to all of you over by the coast, and for those of you over here in the hill country, don’t try driving across any flooded streams!

Thoughts and prayers for all in the storm area. Please be careful.

Hopefully, Ole Harvey will scoot by y’all with no damage and bring some water to our inland lakes. Up on the LLano all the playas are full already.

I live west of Houston proper in the suburb of Katy and we’re ready. Major concern this AM was going through the refrigerator identifying those items we need to eat first in the event we lose electricity. We lived two weeks without power when Ike powered through (we were north of Houston in Spring then) and you learn to be inventive. Funniest thing last night was that while I was checking out at the grocery store, I got $40 cash back, all in $1 bills as that was all they had. Took them to the bank this AM and got ‘real’ money. The advice about not driving through standing water is so true. Amazing the numbers who will drive around barricades, get their cars washed away and then blame the authorities for not doing more.

    Kemberlee Kaye in reply to 94Corvette. | August 25, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    Truth. All of it. We ate SO well after Ike. Friends in the neighborhood next to ours were among the first to receive power. Every night, all of our friends went over for showers, brought the best in their freezers, and we ate well, drank well, played cards, and just enjoyed having some mandated time to unplug and slow down.

      94Corvette in reply to Kemberlee Kaye. | August 25, 2017 at 4:57 pm

      Kemberlee- if you have ever been to Hermann Park downtown by the Medical Center and have seen the train there, I drive it as my retirement job. They have sent us home through Sunday (and probably through the first of the week as well when everyone gets a better idea of how the hurricane is tracking). My wife is now secure, she found a case of bottled water at our HEB so we have it for emergencies. Me, I’ve been out in the garage waxing my Corvette as we’re heading to Bowling Green KY to attend the National Corvette Museum’s Labor Day celebration.

My daughter lives on the coast , 4 exits from Louisiana as they like to say in Texas, with a 4.5 week old little girl, daddy is a pilot and away so MIL flew down and they packed up with the very large German Shepherd, guns and jewelry and made it to Forth worth in 6 hours by truck. At that time and back roads traffic was light and the princess actually slept. That’s something, because this baby is colicky and NEVER sleeps.
I think God was looking down on them and hope he continues to bless Texas.

    Valerie in reply to gonzotx. | August 25, 2017 at 11:48 pm

    This was always my go-to while I lived in Houston: pack the car and the baby, go visit Mama. The force e of a hurricane drops dramatically as it moves inland.

And for gawds sake stay away from crowds. They are the most unpredictable part of any natural disaster. People do crazy stupid things when they panic and you don’t want to be anywhere near that.

No mention of generators and gas?

Harvey has a pretty tight wind field [not unusual in a major hurricane]. Houston shouldn’t have much of a wind problem. There should be no sustained hurricane force winds [74mph] at all and a lower than 50% probability of tropical storm force winds [39 mph], there. There will be a lot of water, both rain and some tidal surge. But, Houston should not have major problems. Now, Corpus Christi is going to get hammered by high winds and blowing water and storm surge. My prayers are with the residents there.

This is my first Hurricane, just moved from Cleveland OH 2 1/2 years ago. I live in the Energy Corridor, my wife and I have been treating our preparations like a snowstorm that we grew up with in Ohio (her) and WNY (me).
She went shopping yesterday and I got the gas cans filled for our generator this morning, two gas stations were out already and based on the line at the third, they should be out by now.
I work for the County government and they were basically telling us don’t come to work on Monday.

    Shane in reply to Tim. | August 25, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    Be very very careful with generators. Too many people have had the exhaust enter their living areas and kill them. Have a CO detector and take precautions.

“Isn’t that too deep to drive through?”

“No, it’s not too much water. Probably won’t even get up to the side of the car.”

“I think that’s a periscope in the middle.”

“Oh. Well, maybe we should stay on this side.”

“Ya think?”

    1 inch of running water is enough to compromise traction. 2 inches can take you off of the road. 4 inches can take a semi off the road. I have seen Caterpillar D-7 bulldozers moved by 1 foot of running water. Under no circumstances whatever should you ever drive through flowing water. Even standing water can be hazardous.

    Word to the wise.

    For the record: I lived within 2 miles (and usually less than 500 yards) of the Mississippi Gulf Coast beaches for twelve years (1975-1987). I’ve already lived through more hurricanes than I care to remember. I’m currently in San Antonio, Texas. We’re looking at the possibility of 3 feet of rain, and winds 45-50 MPH gusting 65+. It’s gonna be a fun weekend…

I really hope people on the coastline have evacuated. May God keep you safe, Kemberlee, and may God bless Texas.

I hope everyone is safe, but –

This is Category 3, right?
Not Category 4.
Not Category 5.
Is the new requirement that the Media/Federal/State/Local governments go to battle stations for all Cat 3 storms? Should I become hysterically concerned about how quickly President Trump arrives on-scene, to empathize w/the wet & unprepared? If he doesn’t cry on cue, is he a racist?

When do we move it down to Cat 2 (just to be really, really safe …)?

Cat 4, now. For the Houston area, the big threat is rain. If this thing dwells like forecasted, the thoughts are around 20+ inches of rain. I have lived through three 15″ rain events in NW Houston over the past eight years. Not a lot of fun.

As for Trump, Abbott is good. Unlike Landreau / Naggin (who managed to get Bush cast as incompentent – Bush was begging to support, knowing the rules having just left being a Governor….)

I reviewed Wiki on Hurricane Ike (from comments above, thx) & acknowledge that Cat 3 (especially if they increase to 4) can be extremely dangerous wrt storm surge & refer to my opening line. I was snarky & apologize.
But I stand by the concern regarding “everything is an emergency” (& the impossible standard the media will set for Presidential success).

Just finished watching tonight’s local news and I’m convinced that the stations must put those reporters and camera crews they dislike out in this weather to give us the local flavor reports. Do they really need to stand in the pouring rain to convince us that it’s wet outside? Even a dog knows enough to come in from the rain.

In my area NW of Houston, we have only a few concerns. We lost thousands of trees (oaks mostly, due to their surface root character and large sail area, with super-saturated soils), tornadoes, and flooding. Absent a tornado, there’s no great threat here, though my surrounding streams can mean I’m trapped for a few days.

I store water, durable foods, and dog food, so no sweat.

When Ike came through, my meter loop was taken out by a tree. I’d rebuilt the entry panel by the next day, but it was weeks before the power company rebuilt the drop from the power pole. Makes you appreciate the great boon of reliable power.

So howzabout an update, Kemberlee?