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3. Local EM
4. Evacuation and Evacuees
5. Shelters
6. Federal
7. International
8. Preparedness
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13. Environmental
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rita damage  - PDF
October 25, 2005 From Texas Situation Report Number 29

Texas 254 counties are eligible for Public Assistance, Categories A and B.

Individual Assistance Program Summary

REGISTRATIONS & CONTACTS

AS OF COB October 24, 2005

Designated Counties

Undesignated Counties

Cumulative

Registration Intake

444,791

1,411

447,688

HOUSING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

REGISTRATIONS

TOTAL

Referrals Received

305,778

Referrals Approved

212,922

Approved Amount

$493,470,476

ASSISTANCE CHECKS

TOTAL

Number Payments

221,582

Dollar Amount of Payments

$436,580,125

DISASTER UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE

AS OF COB October 17, 2005

CLAIMS

TOTAL

Claims Filed

*(Pending approval for DUA)

55,962


Hurricane Rita Shelters

As of 10-24-05

Bexar

2

331

Chambers

1

2

Falls

1

53

Harris

1

17

McLennan

1

32

Upshur

1

1

Wichita

1

54

TOTAL

8

490


  1. DAMAGES:

As of 10-22-05

County

Single Family Dwellings

Mobile Homes

Apartments

Destroyed

Major

Minor

Destroyed

Major

Minor

Destroyed

Major

Minor

Angelina –

Lufkin

0

30

85

0

3

12

0

0

48

Angelina

35

300

500

35

400

500

0

25

25

Chambers

7

134

167

15

66

70

0

4

4

Cherokee

0

0

15

0

0

10

0

0

0

Harris

16

27

11,630

0

0

0

0

0

0

Harris –

La Porte

0

0

70

1

2

5

0

0

0

Jefferson

75

2,000

10,000

15

500

1,000

35

250

500

Jefferson – Port Arthur

750

3,000

9,000

900

25

40

200

3,000

500

Jefferson – Groves

60

800

2,000

0

0

60

0

5

4

Jefferson – Nederland

116

1,456

3,961

77

193

116

47

332

475

Liberty

7

124

94

10

294

331

0

12

1

Liberty – Liberty, City

0

3

6

1

3

5

0

0

0

Montgomery

4

25

67

30

40

60

0

0

0

Newton

55

200

800

60

100

310

0

0

0

Newton –Newton, City

0

155

200

0

75

75

0

18

40

Orange

3,600

9,000

11,250

200

400

500

200

300

600

Polk

29

329

305

24

242

325

0

10

5

Sabine

20

94

408

40

250

482

1

5

0

San Augustine-

San Augustine, City

0

5

100

0

5

10

0

0

0

San Jacinto

250

500

1,500

250

1,000

500

0

0

0

Shelby

0

0

10

0

0

1

0

0

0

Shelby –

Center, City

0

3

10

0

3

5

0

0

0

Trinity

15

80

295

21

75

301

0

3

2

Tyler

150

375

459

131

450

650

0

0

0

Totals

5,189

18,640

52,832

1,810

4,126

5,368

483

3,964

2,204


On October 7, 2005 PM The Texas Emergency Management Agency today issued its 17th Hurricane Rita Situation Report.

On October 6, 2005 PM The Texas Emergency Management Agency today issued its 16th Hurricane Rita Situation Report.
Today we are going to look at:
OFFICE OF ELECTRICITY DELIVERY AND ENERGY RELIABILITY (OE)
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Gulf Coast Hurricanes1 Situation Report #11
October 6, 2005 (3:00 PM EDT)
HIGHLIGHTS
  Currently, 330,636 customers are without electric power in Texas and Louisiana.
  Entergy reports on 10/5 that electricity service to the ten refineries affected by hurricanes
Katrina and Rita and served by Entergy in the Beaumont/Port Arthur, Lake Charles, and New Orleans areas is continuing and that refineries now have at least a single source feed for clean-up power and six have full operational capacity.
  Entergy reports that 39% of customers have gas service available (a total of 56,810 customers have had gas restored). The restored customers are Central Business District (100%), Central City (35%), Garden District (61%), French Quarter (95%), Upper 9th Ward (9%), Lower 9th Ward (0%), Audubon (60%), City Park (8%), Gentilly (45%), Lakeview (24%), Mid City (12%), Downtown (12%), New Orleans East (0%), Warehouse District (93%), and Algiers (100%).
  Full commercial power has been restored at the Trunkline LNG facility at Lake Charles.
The terminal is now operating at normal levels with full re-gasification and send-out capability. An LNG tank ship completed a cargo transfer yesterday evening. The next shipment is scheduled for a Friday arrival.
  Henry Hub has resumed limited operation without compressors. Limited interconnects are working at this time.
October 5, 2005 PM The Texas Emergency Management Agency today issued its 15th Hurricane Rita Situation Report and its 16th Hurricane Rita Situation Report 
Today we updated the number of people still living in shelters which, as of 10/5/05 was 17,678 people.

DAMAGES: Many counties in affected areas remain without power, communications, water or basic services. Preliminary damage assessments are underway, but reports are impeded due to lack of communications and the focus of local resources remains on basic life support operations.

As of 1:00 p.m. 10-04-05

County

Single Family Dwellings

Mobile Homes

Apartments

Destroyed

Major

Minor

Destroyed

Major

Minor

Destroyed

Major

Minor

Harris

16

27

11,630

Note: Harris County report did not break out by type, just total of all dwellings; total does not reflect their input

San Jacinto

250

500

1,500

250

1,000

500

0

0

0

Polk

29

329

305

24

242

325

0

10 5


Trinity

15 80

295

21

75

301

0

3

2

Cherokee

0

0

15

0

0

10

0

0 0


Jefferson

75

2,000

10,000

15

500

1,000

35

250 500


Jefferson – Port Arthur

750

3,000

9,000

900

25

40

200

3,000

500

Jefferson – Groves

60

800

2,000

0

0

60

0

5

4

Jefferson –Nederland

116

1,456

3,961

77

193

116

47

332

475

Liberty

0 28

39

1

9

28

0

0

1

Shelby

0

0 10


0

0

1

0

0

0

Newton

55

200

800

60

100

310

0

0

0

Newton –Newton, City

0

155

200

0

75

75

0

18

40

Totals

1366

8,575

39,755

1348

2,219

2,766

282

3,618

1527

October 3, 2005 PM The Texas Emengency Management Agency has issued its 14th Hurricane Rita
Keeping up with our pattern of presenting selected sections of the situation reports to our site's visitiors:
"Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD): Fifty-four Game Wardens continue to assist with law enforcement operations along with assisting those in need or medical attention as well as food and water deliveries in Sabine, Jasper, Tyler, San Augustine, and Newton Counties. The TPWD Command Center in Jasper, reported the following activity for 10-02-05:
1. 1813 contacts
2. 17 critical care contacts
3. 10 medical calls
4. 40 LE calls
5. 19 LE assists
6. 16 security details
7. 139 welfare checks
8. 1 arrest (drugs/weapons/trespass/etc.)
9. 5,164 meals distributed
10. 425 cases of water distributed
11. 5164 meals distributed
Texas Department of Transportation (TXDOT): TXDOT has over 420 employees as contractors in the affected areas working continuously. All major roads are open. TXDOT crews continue to clear debris on secondary roads and work with energy companies to clear electrical lines. TXDOT is clearing debris along the ROW on major highways under the Federal Highway Administration’s Emergency Relief program. Many traffic signals in the affected area are lacking electrical power. TXDOT personnel have implemented innovative methods of powering traffic signals at critical intersections including use of portable generators and laying temporary drop lines. As electricity is restored, traffic signals will be returned to operational pre-storm status. TXDOT assisted the GLO by clearing a county road to provide access for a temporary pipeline to be installed to offload a dry dock tanker loaded with fuel.
Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA): TDHCA is working with the GDEM Recovery Staff to conduct post-hurricane damage assessments.
Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC): Field reports and contacts with the EOCs in the affected counties continue to indicate that few animal issues persist, so the animal issues incident command post (ICP) will be deactivated today. However, key agency representatives on the ICP can still be contacted for animal-related issues by calling 512-719-0700 or 800-550-8242. There have been some calls for donations of food, grain, hay, and fencing materials, and the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) is working with industry partners to see if the needed items can be obtained. However, for the most part requestors are being advised to go to their local feed, pet, or hardware stores for the materials, as most of these are now opened."
October 2, 2005 PM  The Texas Emergency Management Agency has issued its 13th Hurricane Rita Situation Report

Recovery Centers

1DRC #

DRC Sites and Addresses

Hours

Mgr

NOTES

HOUSTON (HARRIS COUNTY)

DRC 16

Greater Houston Area DRC

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.



6059 South Loop East

Paul Ferris

open

Houston TX 77087


7 days

SAN ANTONIO (BEXAR COUNTY)

DRC 7

Kelly AFB

8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.



809 Davy Crockett Road Bldg 171

Cathy Greene

closing at 6pm

San Antonio, TX 78266


10/1/2005

DRC 18

Kelly AFB

8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.



809 Davy Crockett Road Bldg 1537

Cathy Greene

open

San Antonio, TX 78266


7 days

DALLAS (DALLAS COUNTY)

DRC 5

Dallas Convention Center

8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.


open

650 Griffin Street

Robert Gilliam

Mon-Sat

Dallas, TX 75202


closed Sunday

2

FORT WORTH (TARRANT COUNTY)

DRC 11

Amon Carter Exhibit Hall

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.


open

3401 Burnett Tandy Drive

Victor Merced

Mon-Sat

Fort Worth, TX 76107


closed Sunday

AUSTIN (TRAVIS COUNTY)

DRC 19

Greater Austin Area

8:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.


open

825 East Rundberg Lane Suite E

Ellis Davis

Mon-Sat

Austin TX 78753


closed Sunday

GALVESTON (GALVESTON COUNTY)

DRC 14

Island Community Center

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.


open

4700 Broadway

Liza Chigos

7 days

Galveston, TX 77551



TYLER (Smith County)

DRC 20

Smith County/Tyler City DRC

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.


open

2301South Broadway Ave

Eddie Diaz

7 days

Tyler, TX 75701



MOBILE DRCs

MOBILE DRCs

Mobile DRC Sites and Addresses

Hours

Mgr

NOTES


Tyler County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Jim Dufala


MDRC1

1495 South Magnolia Street

open 7 days

SHAW

South HWY 69



Woodville TX (wal Mart


MDRC2

Hardin County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Don Moore


SHAW

Kountze High School 1488 FM 1293

open 7 days


Kountze TX, 77625


MDRC3

Chambers County

8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

TBD

open

SHAW

1700 Main Street

7 days


Ft Anahuac Park (Behind American Legion)



Anahuac TX


MDRC4

Tyler County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Albert Ferris


SHAW

12212 FM 92

open


Spurger High School Parking Lot

7 days


Spurger TX


MDRC5

Jefferson County

8:00 a.m. to



4:00 p.m.

SHAW

Parkdale Mall

Eric Peters

open


6155 Eastex Freeway


7 days


Beaumont, TX 77706




Jefferson County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.


open

MDRC6

5830 N Knauth Rd

Angelo Cedrone

7 days

FEMA

Beaumont, TX 77705




Orange County

9: 00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.



MDRC7

4040 Lutcher

Sam Carroll

open

SHAW

1-10 & FM 3247


7 days


Orange TX 77632




Jefferson County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.



MDRC8

Port Arthur

Jim Swanston

open

SHAW

Civic Center


7 days


3401 Cultural Center Dr. (Off Highway 73)




Port Arthur, TX 77642



MOBILE DRCs

MOBILE DRCs

Mobile DRC Sites and Addresses

Hours

Mgr

NOTES


Liberty County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.



MDRC9

Liberty County Courthouse

TBD

open 7 days

SHAW

1923 Sam Houston




Liberty, TX 77575




Newton County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.



MDRC10

802 Rusk Street

Jeff Robins

open

SHAW

next to strip mall


7 days


Newton, TX 77630



MDRC11

Jasper County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.



SHAW

Buna High School

Robert Fowler

open 7 days


Highway 62 & 253




Buna TX 77612




Galveston County

8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.



MDRC12

County Annex

Patrick Nadon

open

SHAW

960 Noble Carl Dr.


7 days


Crystal Beach, TX 77650




Jefferson County

8:00 a.m. to

6:00 p.m.

MDRC13

SE Texas Regional Airport

Bruce Holly

open

FEMA

Entrance at Corner of 1st & Jerry Ware Drive


7 days


Beaumont/Port Arthur



MDRC14 FEMA

Harrison County

8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Jana Pennington

Mon 10/3/05

2501 W. End Blvd. South

through 3:00 p.m

Marshall, TX 75670

Wed 10/5/05

(Marshall Civic Ctr.)


Marion County

8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Jana Pennington

Thu 10/6/05

120 E. Austin St.

through 3:00 p.m.

Jefferson, TX 75657

Sat 10/8/05

( Cypress Valley Alliance Bldg.)


 





October 1, 2005 PM Today after 4 PM the Texas Emergency Management Agency made available two Hurricane Rita situation reports, Situation Report 11 and Situation Report 12.
The most important information in the two reports is a Disaster "Declaration Amendment: The President of the United States responding to a request from the Governor of Texas added Angelina, Brazoria, Fort Bend, Harris, Montgomery, Nacogdoches, Polk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Trinity, and Walker Counties to the existing list of Chambers, Galveston, Hardin, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Newton, Orange, and Tyler Counties which were previously declared for Individual Assistance, making a total of 22 counties eligible."

Additional Point of Distribution have been added since we first posted the information here so we are posting the new list.
9/30/2005 Hurricane Rita Pods POD
# POD Name County Facility Address Civilian and/or Local Official in Charge
1 Deweyville Newton Sub Courthouse Off Hwy 12 / Spur 272, Deweyville, TX Sherriff (409) 746-2565
2 Buna Jasper 1st Baptist Church Intersection of Hwy 62 & Hwy 253, Buna TX Steve Litton, Fire Chief (409) 994-2178
3 San Augustine San Augustine Courthouse Town Square Highway 21; San Augustine, TX Chief Ken Deleceda (936) 275-3400; Don Michiel (936) 275-2424
4 Hemphill Sabine Sherriff Dept 310 Main Street; Hemphill, TX Tina Warren (409) 787-2266 Cpt Brian Idetther (936) 275-2891
5 Lufkin Angelina Albertson's 400 N Timberland Dr (near Frank St); Lufkin, TX Sgt. Mark Coles 936-634-8781 DPS Lt Roy Owen 936-634-4623 or 936-634-4638
6 Orange Orange Airport 2600 block of SH 87; south of FM105; Orange, TX Ken (409) 998-7495 or 7493
7 Center Shelby Center Municipal Airport 397 FM 1656 (off Hwy 7E); Shelby, TX (if approaching from the south take Loop 500 to Hwy 7E Capt Chris Metevier (512) 750-8205
8 Jasper Jasper Vacant Bottling Co. Building 202 Success Way (at intersection of 63 & 190 turn north between Walnut & Lowes); Jasper, TX Billy Ted Smith (judge) (863) 833-1577; Mark Allen(409)383-6168
9 Newton Newton Fairgrounds Hwy Loop 505 E. of Newton; Newton, TX Truman Daughtry (409) 379-3638
10 Woodville Tyler Football Field Pecan Street off SH 190; Woodville, TX Lt Garcia EOC (210) 387-7404
11 Liberty Liberty High School Football Field Corner of Bowie St and Grand Ave; Liberty, TX Leroy Hanel-EOC(936) 336-4559;Todd Fonta- neau (936) 336-4559
12 Dayton Liberty Woodrow Wilson Junior High Take Bowie St to Field; 1/4 mi south of SH 90 on SH 146; Dayton, TX Chief Donzat (936) 258-7621
13 Cleveland Liberty Stancile Park 209 Peach Street; ClevelandWilly Carter (281) 659-5325; Steve Wheeler (281) 592-2622
14 Nacogdoches Nacogdoches Morgan Oil Truck Stop 4919 NW Stallings; NW corner of US59 and Loop 224; Nacogdoches, TX David Smith or Aaron Colhavey EOC (936) 559-2655 Kenny Ferguson NPD (936) 558-8754; Dan Taravella (936) 569-4538
15 Anahuac Chambers Court House 404 Washington; Anahuac, TX Jimmy Sylvia (409) 267-8295
16 Livingston Polk Emergency Services Office 1402 Washington; best off ramp to take is Bus59; Livingston, TX Dennis Allen (936) 200-2073
17 Kountze Hardin Kountz High School300 Monroe; Kountze, TX Teresa Willey (409) 246-5110
18 Kirbyville Jasper 1st Baptist Church 105 N. Barrow; Kirbyville, TX Charles Burchette (409) 423-2739
19 Coldspring San Jacinto San Jacinto County Annex 111 SH 150; Coldspring, TX Shirley Brandon (936) 653-5290
20 Alabama Coushatta Polk Main Tribal Office 571 State Park Rd 56; Alabama Coushatta, TX (936) 563-1105
21 Groveton Trinity Court House Intersection of hwys 94 & 287; Groveton, TX Sherriffs Office (936) 642-1746
22 Colmsneil Tyler City Hall 204 W Elder / FM 256 W; Colmsneil, TX Carrie Edwards (409) 383-9109; City Hall (409) 837-2502
23 Onalaska Polk Fire Department Old Groveton/Hwy 190; Onalaska, TX Chief Roy Newport (936) 329 2715; Angela or Sherki (936) 646-6566
24 Port Arthur Jefferson Holiday Inn Hwy 69 & Jimmie Johnson Blvd; Port Arthur, TX
25 Groves (inactive) Jefferson Old Super KMART 4400 Twin City Hwy; Groves, TX Brad (337) 281-090; Jeff Phillips (409) 673-8663
26 Huntington Angelina Huntington High School Hwy 69 E. Huntington, TX Derek (936) 876-4491
27 Diboll Angelina Diboll High School CLOSED on 9/27
28 West Hardin Hardin West Hardin High School 770 East, SH 107; Saratoga, TX Blackman (409) 246-2046
29 Hardin Liberty Fire Station 10741 SH146N; Hardin (Liberty), TX 77575 Craig Powell, Fire Chief (936) 334-6473
30 Splendora Montgomery Police Station 26090 FM 2090E; Splendora, TX
31 Nederland Jefferson Central Mall 3100 Hwy 365; corner of US 69 & Hwy 365; Nederland (Port Arthur), TX Jeff Phillips ESO (409) 626-4984
32 Beaumont Jefferson Park Dale Mall 6155 Eastx (Hwy 69); corner of US69 & Dowlen; Beaumont, TX Jeff Phillips ESO (409) 626-4984
33 Zavalla Angelina City Hall 838 E. Main Street; US 63; Zavalla, TX Police Chief (936) 897-8209; Dave Lebsack ESO (512) 848-1080
34 Splendora Montgomery Splendora Baptist Church 12308 Hwy 59 South, Splendora TX Chief John Mayo (836) 347-6582 or Mickey Kelley (936) 334-6473
35 Port Aurthur Blue Bonnett Jefferson 36 Hamshire Jefferson 37 Port Aurthur Memorial HS Jefferson
There are still a total of 65 towns with 285 shelters in operation which have a population of 40,683 residents.
(return to top of page)

Earlier Entries To The Rita Diary
Current Weather Watches                                 Watch, Warning and Advisory Display
Current Weather Watches map                           Watch, Warning and Advisory Display Map

Today's National
Forecast                            Current  Weather              National Weather Warnings

National forecast map       Current Weather map          National Weather Warnings Map
Day 1 Forecast  Precipitation                                Day 2 Forecast Precipitation

        Day 1 Forecast Precipitation map                 Day 2 Forecast Precipitation map
  (return to top of page)
The Rothstein Catalogue!


StatesBefore and After Land fall flooding
Texas Emergency Management Agency
Texas Emergency Management Situation Reports
Texas Weather Cameras
Florida Division of Emergency Management
Louisiana Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness
Mississippi Emergency Management Agency
Mississippi Forestry Commission -- Situation Reports
Arkansas Department of Emergency Management
The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management
Alabama Emergency Management Agency
Georgia Office of Homeland Security - GEMA
Arkansas Department of Emergency Management
Tennessee Emergency Management Agency
VAEmergency.com Responding to Katrina
Traffic
Alabama: Traffic Information Line: 1-800-843-0699
Florida: Emergency Information Line: 1-800-342-3557
Louisiana: Traffic Information Line: 1-800-256-7036
Mississippi: Traffic Information Line: 1-800-222-6362
Texas: Highway Conditions Information: 1-800-452-9292
(return to top of page)

Local Governments and Sheriff's Offices
Angelina County,Texas
Angelina County Sheriff
Chambers County, Texas
Chambers County Sheriff's Department
Hardin County, Texas
Hardin County Sheriff 
Jasper County, Texas
Jasper County Sheriff
Jefferson County, Texas
Jefferson County, Texas - Sheriff's Department
Liberty County, Texas
Liberty County - County Sheriff
Polk County, Texas
Polk County Sheriff
Hardin County, Texas
Hardin County Sheriff
Nacogdoches County
Newton County, Texas
Newton County Sheriff, Texas
Orange County
The Orange Leader, Orange Texas
Sabine County Texas
San Augustine County, Texas
San Augustine County Sheriff
San Jacinto County, Texas
San Jacinto County Sheriff
Shelby County, Texas
Shelby County Sheriff, Texas
Trinity County, Texas
Trinity County Sheriff, Texas
Tyler Morning Telegraph
Walker County Online - Texas

Local Emergency Management Offices
Texas
City of Austin
Brazos County (Bryan/College Station)
City of Bryan
City of Corpus Christi
Fort Bend County (Richmond)
Galveston County (Galveston)
Harris County  -- Category Five -- What could happen 
City of Houston Houston Transportation Center
Houston TranStar Freeway Cameras
Houston School Closings
Montgomery County (Conroe) City of Nassau Bay Travis County Emergency Conditions Information (Austin)
City of Victoria -- Hurricane Rita Situation Reports
Wharton County
Florida
Miami/Dade County Emergency Management
Alabama
Tuscaloosa County, Alabama Emergency Management Agency
Georgia
Columbia County, Georgia Hurricane Katrina
National Weather Service Forecast Office - Fort Worth, Texas - Special
(return to top of page)

Evacuation
Key Phone Numbers – Hurricane Rita
FEMA tele-registration – 800.621.3362  (For Individuals)
www.fema.gov
Red Cross call center  - (Clothing, Food & Shelter & Contractors)2-1-1 or 888.317.4567
(in Texas only) or  800 HelpNow or 800 Get-Info (nationwide)
Salvation Army – 800 SAL-ARMY (800.725.2769)
One Star Foundation  - 800.707.6768 (Volunteers/Donations)
www.onestarfoundation.org
Food Stamp Assistance – 800.500.4266
Texas Workforce Commission –
            Evacuees – 800.818.7811
            Employers – 800.695.6879
Texas Unemployment Office
            Austin – 512.340.4300
            Dallas – 214.252.1200
            El Paso – 915.832.6400
            Ft Worth – 817.420.1600
            Houston – 281.983.1100
            McAllen – 956.984.4700
            San Antonio – 210.258.6600
            All Others – 800.939.6631
To file claim online – www.laworks.net
Texas Education Agency
Evacuees wanting to enroll children and schools with questions – 800.957.5109
Louisiana teachers interested in Texas teaching positions – 866.435.7090
FIND LOVED ONES
 American Red Cross         877.568.3317
www.familylinks.icrc.org or www.redcross.org
Find Family National Call Center           866.326.9393
Lost Children:      Children’s Assessment Center  713.986.3300
EMAC (Emergency Management Assistance Compact)
512.424.2208 (phone)   512.424.7160 (fax)
To Report Consumer Fraud / Price Gouging in Disaster Relief
Attorney General of Texas
http://www.oag.state.tx.us/consumer/consumer.shtml , or 800 337 3928
Department of Homeland Security, Office of the Inspector General
FAX:  202.254.4292
EMAIL:    DHSOIGHOTLINE [at] dhs.gov  **
Texas Department of Insurance Consumer Help Line
800.252.3439 
** Email address are dissected to deter data miners.

Google has a name based search engine that accesses databases of evacuees.
MCI's Registration service of evacuees.
Evacuees register themselves by calling  1-877-HELP-KAT (1-877-435-7528) Locate someone who is missing by calling 1-866-601-FIND (1-866-601-3463).
Scipionus.com - Information Locator Map -- Click on the map to find information posting related to a specific area
Search and Rescue, U.S. Coast Guard Requests for rescues of missing or stranded persons will be entered into the system, viewed by command center and prioritized as received.
National Next of Kin Registry
Salvation Army's Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) ActivatedSend an online request to locate missing family and friends. If you can't connect to the site immediately, please try again.
Red Cross Alert for Persons with Emergency Medical ConditionsThe Red Cross is only accepting phone calls to search for missing persons in these emergency circumstances: insulin dependant diabetics, oxygen dependant, dialysis patient, blind, recent heart attack or stroke victims, mobility challenged, broken leg, foot or ankle, or paralyzed.
National Next Of Kin Registry International Emergency Contact System
Missing Persons Board
Wal-Mart's Hurricane Katrina Message Board

Department of State Health Services (DSHS): DSHS has established a toll-free number
where family members can call to locate hospital and nursing home patients evacuated by the
facility because of Hurricane Rita. People within Texas may call 877-623-6274 for location of
displaced hospital and nursing home patients 24 hours a day. Those in Austin should call
512-458-7189. Callers need the name, date of birth and gender of the patient. In cooperation
with the Teas Hospital Association, DSHS will provide the hospital name and location if
available in its directory but not the patient’s health status.

Hurricane Rita Information
From: http://www.dot.state.tx.us/
Return trips to Houston are strongly discouraged until further notice. At this time, travelers should expect extensive delays and fuel shortages.State officials have planned a phased return during the next three days for motorists returning to the Houston-Galveston area beginning Sunday, September 25. See map for details (PDF).
At 8 PM EDT 9/24/05 We recieved a report that State highway 59 into Houston is open all along its legnth in both directions. Jefferson county is still closed to residents wanting to return home. They are being turned back on all roads until the are is deemed safe for their return.

At noon 9/24/05 we recieved a report that  IH 10 and state highway 146 have been reopened. IH 10 is the main artery for moving response forces to East Texas. State highway 69 to Tyler is now open. Air flights will begin to the most critical areas at 1500 today. The Houston Astrodome is set up as a TRIAGE center for critical patients being evacuated from the affected areas. Patients will be dispatched from the Astrodome to other hospitals for appropriate care. A refueling point for essential response forces and other critical assets will be established at the Astrodome today.
Rita Fuel Availability Information Map
Aransas, Brazoria, Chambers, Galveston, Hardin, Harris, Jasper, Jefferson, Jim Wells, Kenedy, Kleberg, Liberty, Matagorda, Newton, Orange, and Wharton Counties have issued mandatory evacuation orders.
Contra-flow traffic:
• The contra-flow route on I45 from Houston has been extended northward to the city of Ennis at U.S. 287 in Ellis County.
• All traffic lanes on U.S. 69 from Lumberton to Woodville and from Zavalla to Huntington are on-way northbound.
• All traffic lanes on U.S. 96 from Evadale to Jasper are one-way northbound.
• All traffic lanes on I-10 from SH 6 to Sequin are one-way westbound.
Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS): DFPS has contacted facilities and foster homes about disaster evacuation plans. A telephone line, 1-800 Foster/Adopt, is available for reporting relocation and contract information to Child Protective Services (CPS). The Internet contact option will be added to the website for foster families or facilities to provide this information. The individual program areas within the department are formulating a plan to re-deploy other staff to those areas where DFPS personnel may be adversely affected by the hurricane. Information regarding the status of each affected office will be posted on the department’s website.
Texas  DoPS Hurricane Evacuation Maps and Information 
For road closure information in Texas visit the Texas DoT web site: Expressway.
Brazoria/Galveston/Harris County Hurricane Evacuation Map & Evacuation Zones
Fort Bend County Evacuation Routes

Shelters
3. SHELTERS
County # Of Shelters Reported Population Reported 9/26/05  9/27/05 as of 9/27/05
Anderson 2 -- 491  9/27/05 - Same  10/5/05 - 1 -- 12
Angelina 35 -- 6,817 9/27/05 - 6,401   10/5/05 - 6 -- 819
Austin 5 -- 530  9/27/05 - 50   10/5/05 - None
Bastrop 1 -- 35  9/27/05 - Same   10/5/05 - None
Bell 1 -- 188  9/27/05 - None   10/5/05 - None
Bexar 21 -- 13,995  9/27/05 - 4,646   10/5/05 - None
Bowie 6 -- 359  9/27/05 - 289   10/5/05 - 8 -- 441
Brazos 4 -- 1256  9/27/05 - 1,037   10/5/05 - None
Brown 3 -- 414  9/27/05 - Same   10/5/05 - None
Burleson 4 -- 400 Currrent - Same   10/5/05 - 1 -- 400
Camp 1 -- 55  9/27/05 - 106   10/5/05 - 1 -- 17
Cherokee 2 -- 292  9/27/05 - 373   10/5/05 - 2 -- 267
Collin 1 -- 226  9/27/05 - 347   10/5/05 -  1 -- 347
Colorado 2 -- 153 9/27/05 - 67   10/5/05 - 1 -- 53
Coryell 1 -- 64  9/27/05 - 64   10/5/05 - None
Dallas 1 -- 12,116  9/27/05 - 789   10/5/05 - 6 -- 1,029
Denton 2 -- 122  9/27/05 - 2 -- 108   10/5/05 - 2 -- 133
Ector 1 -- 3  9/27/05    10/5/05 - None
El Paso 1 -- 210 9/27/05  1 - 750    10/5/05 - None
Ellis 6 -- 525  9/27/05 - 150   10/5/05 - 2 -- 150
Falls 6 -- 138  9/27/05 - Same   10/5/05 -  5 -- 128
Fayette 1 -- 983  9/27/05 - 958   10/5/05 - 3 -- 314
Grayson 4 -- 0  9/27/05 - Same   10/5/05 - 1 -- 2
Gregg 2 --3167  9/27/05 - 1984   10/5/05 - 15 -- 1,715
Hamilton 1 --20  9/27/05 - 20   10/5/05 - 1 -- 125
Harden None   9/27/05 - 600   10/5/05 - None
Harris 6 -- 140 9/27/05 - 110   10/5/05 - 22 - 2,652
Harrison 2 -- 420  9/27/05 - 250   10/5/05 - 1 -- 250
Hidalgo 1 -- 38   9/27/05 - 38   10/5/05 - 1 -- 38
Houston    10/5/05 - 4 -- 401
Jasper    10/5/05 - 3  -- 265
Johnson    10/5/05 -  1 -- 30
Kaufman    10/5/05 - 1 -- 112
Kendall 1 -- 250   9/27/05 - 250   10/5/05 - None
Kimble 2 -- 120   9/27/05 - 120   10/5/05 - 2 -- 120
Lamar 1 -- 56   9/27/05 - 60   10/5/05 - 2 -- 60
Liberty    10/5/05 - 3 --65
Lubbock 1 -- 711   9/27/05 -443    10/5/05 - None
Maverick 1 -- 18   9/27/05 - 18   10/5/05 - None
McLennan 20 -- 3,786   9/27/05 - 1,322   10/5/05 - 3 -- 276
Montgomery 9 -- 19,190   9/27/05 - 1,453   10/5/05 - 1 -- 62
Nacogdoches 11 -- 2,340   9/27/05 - 2,426   10/5/05 - 6 -- 445
Panola 3 -- 700   9/27/05 - 1,079   10/5/05 - 4 -- 77
Polk 2 -- 0   9/27/05 - 254   10/5/05 - 1 --26
Potter 1 -- 146   9/27/05 - 146   10/5/05 - None
Rusk 6 -- 692   9/27/05 - 1,138   10/5/05 - 7 -- 301
San Augustine None 9/27/05 - 15 - 2,012    10/5/05 - 11 -- 218
Shelby 15 -- 4740   9/27/05 - 0   10/5/05 - 8 -- 416
Smith 22 -- 3,285  9/27/05 - 549   10/5/05 - 16 -- 1,251
Tarrant 14 -- 869   9/27/05 - 254   10/5/05 - 13 -- 1,120
Titus 1 50   9/27/05 - 143   10/5/05 - None
Tom Green 1 -- 0   9/27/05 - 0   10/5/05 - None
Travis 15 -- 23,924   9/27/05 -8,035    10/5/05 - 2 --741
Tyler 6 -- 564   9/27/05 - 587   10/5/05 - None
Upshur 2 -- 179   9/27/05 - 318   10/5/05 -  3 --175
Van Zandt 2 -- 405   9/27/05 - 1,857   10/5/05 - None
Walker 9 -- 2,192   9/27/05 - 2,192   10/5/05 - 2 -- 80
Washington 13 -- 2,075   9/27/05 - 2,145   10/5/05 - None
Webb 1 -- 423   9/27/05 - 423   10/5/05 - None
Williamson 9 -- 3800   9/27/05 - 2,867   10/5/05 -    10/5/05 - None
Wood 1 -- 125   9/27/05 - None    10/5/05 - 1 -- 83
Zapata    10/5/05 - 1 --9
TOTAL 303 -- 114,898  9/27/05 - __________   10/5/05 -
* As of 10:00 pm, 9-24-05
4. CASUALTIES: None reported
County
City/Area Number
4.
1-877-LOVED1S (1-877-568-3317) so people can locate relatives in shelters.
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Federal
Whitehouse -- Katrina In Focus
National Hurricane Center
FEMA
FEMA - Press
FEMA Emergency Managers Reports
FEMA - Photo Library
National Park Service  - Morning Report
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Hurricane Katrina Response; Environmental Protection Agency
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HHS - Disasters and Emergencies: Hurricane Katrina
SAMHSA's Disaster Mental Health Resource Kit  1-800-789-2647 for bilingual information services (1-866-889-2647: TDD) Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST.
National Incident Management Situation Report by NICC -- PFD
Dept. of Transportation -- Highway Information For Areas Affected By Hurricane Katrina - US ...
US Army Corps of Engineers - Katrina Response
US Coast Guard - Storm Watch
Navy Environmental Health Center --Medical Force Protection for Hurricane Katrina Relief  Situation Reports
Hurricane Katrina's Impact on U.S. Energy
Office of Energy Assurance: Hurricane Katrina Situation Reports
Entergy Storm Information
Entergy Texas News
Entergy Louisiana News
Advisory Situation Reports from The HSUS Disaster Center
Disaster Contractors Network Situation Reports
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International
Assessing progress towards disaster risk reduction within the context of the Hyogo Framework
Reliefweb International
The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency
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Recovering From and Coping With Flood Damaged Property after Returning Home
The Disaster Assistance Process for Individuals

Preparedness
A FEMA Guide to Hurricane Preparedness
US Fire Administration -- Hurricane and Tornado Fire Safety Factsheet HSUS and FEMA --
FEMA Agaist the Wind: Protecting Your Home from Hurricane and Wind Damage -- PDF
FEMA After a Flood: The First Steps
Standard Family Disaster Plan. 
Why Talk About Hurricanes?
Community Hurricane Preparedness. 
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Animals
Animals and Emergencies
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Tracking
Hurricane Tracking Chart 
Color Hurricane Tracking Chart 
Map Hurricane Risk in United States 
The Hurricane FAQ
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Mitigation
Hurricane Damage to Residential Structures: Risk and Mitigation
Designing for wind speed map 
The Saffir-Simpson Scale  Insurance Q and A 
Education Hurricanes - CotF

The Expert's Guide to Disaster Recovery Service Providers
Tropical Strom Rita
If you have any Questions, Comments or suggestions please send an email to:
Host@disastercenter.com
Google
 
Flooding
 Storm total rainfall amounts in inches through 10:00 p.m., September 25:
Beaumont/Port Arthur 8.6”
Center 10.5”
Cleveland 3.8”
De Kalb 3.0”
Evadale 6.3”
Harleton 4.5”
Jefferson 4.2”
Karnack 6.3”
Livingston 2.3”
Linden 3.7”
Longview 5.6”
Marshall 4.3”
Arkansas Real-Time Water Data
Florida Real-Time Water Data 
Louisiana Real-Time Water Data
Texas Real-Time Water Data
Make an Online Hazard Map for Your Location
National Data Buoy Center
NOS WATER LEVEL OBSERVATION NETWORK
NWS River Forecast Information
NWS Flash Flood Guidance
NWS Significant River Flood Outlook USGS Current Water Resources Conditions
nowCOAST: GIS Mapping Portal to Real-Time Environmental Observations and NOAA Forecasts
National Flood Insurance Program
National Weather Service Precipitation Analysis
National Weather Service (NWS) River Forecast Centers
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Satellites and Radar
NOAA GOES Satellite Imagery for Tropical Sectors
NOAA Multi-Dimensional Imagery from Polar Orbiting and Geostationary Satellites
Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) Monterey Marine Meteorology Division Tropical Cyclone Information
NASA MODIS Rapid Response System
NWS National Doppler Radar Sites
NASA - Hurricane 2005: A Hurricane Resource Site
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Track Analysis/Best Track
National Hurricane Center/Tropical Predictions Center Archive of Past Hurricane Seasons
Historical Hurricane Tracks
Continental US Landfall of Hurricanes 1950 - 2004
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Shoreline Change
United States Geological Survey (USGS) Coastal and Marine Geology Program Internet Map Server
USGS Hurricane and Extreme Storm Impact Studies
USGS Mapping Coastal Change Hazards
NOAA Coastal Services Center Topographic Data
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Environmental Affects
NOAA Office of Response and Restoration
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Health Affects
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports
For the CDC index on hurricane information (including fact sheets in English and other languages), please see: 
CDC"s Hurricane Index
For CDC information specific to healthcare professionals
Hurricane-Related Documents and Resources Recently Released or Updated
Drive Safely
http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/pdf/flyer-drive-safely.pdf
Returning Home After a Hurricane: Be Healthy and Safe
http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/returnhome.asp
Cleaning and Sanitizing With Bleach after an Emergency
http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/bleach.asp
Varicella Info from NIP
http://www.cdc.gov/nip/diseases/varicella/
Addition of Safe Water Tips to Announcer Read PSAs
http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/psa_announcerreads.asp#rita
Disposal of Contaminated Medical Devices – FDA site
http://www.fda.gov/cdrh/emergency/disposal.html
Contact Information for Questions about Clinical Investigations Affected by Hurricane Katrina – FDA site
http://www.fda.gov/cder/emergency/clin_invest.htm  
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning After Hurricane Katrina --- Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi, August--September 2005 – MMWR Article
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm54e930a1.htm
 
The following documents have been recently UPDATED:
Effects of Hurricane Katrina on Children's Blood Lead Levels
http://www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/hurricanes/katrina/leadkatrina.asp

Translations for the following documents are now available:
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Damage Assessment and Post-Storm Impact Data
Texas Department of Insurance (TDI): TDI is coordinating with the insurance industry and public information regarding preparations for response and recovery. The TDI Commissioner of Insurance has issued nine bulletins regarding Hurricane Rita which are posted on the TDI website (www.tdi.state.tx.us). TDI is maintaining staff at the Division of Emergency Management State Operations Center and is part of the Rapid Assessment Team that will deploy into the disaster area to survey the extent of damage. They are assembling several teams to be ready to deploy to FEMA’s Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC’s) and upon arrival the staff will assist consumers with insurance questions and
National Hurricane Center/Tropical Predictions Center Tropical Cyclone Reports
NWS Service Assessments
NWS Storm Prediction Center Storm Reports
Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network
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Other sites
Hurricane Rita - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Houston Chronicle Hurricane Rita Blog
The Hurricane Watch Net
HurricaneTrack.com
Caribbean Hurricane Network
Hurricane Strike! Hurricane Science & Safety For Students
September 23, 2005. At 2:05 p.m. U.S. Central time
Click here to view full image (5061 kb)

DURING A HURRICANE WATCH
(A Hurricane Watch is issued when there is a threat of hurricane conditions within 24-36 hours.)
1. Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for hurricane progress reports.
2. Check emergency supply kit.
3. Fuel car.
4. Bring in outdoor objects such as lawn furniture, toys, and garden tools and anchor objects that cannot be brought inside.
5. Secure buildings by closing and boarding up windows. Remove outside antennas.
6. Turn refrigerator and freezer to coldest settings. Open only when absolutely necessary and close quickly.
7. Store drinking water in clean bathtubs, jugs, bottles, and cooking utensils.
8. Store valuables and personal papers in a waterproof container on the highest level of your home. 9. Review evacuation plan.
10. Moor boat securely or move it to a designated safe place. Use rope or chain to secure boat to trailer. Use tiedowns to anchor trailer to the ground or house.
Source: floridadisaster.org/      Florida's Division of Emergency Management
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The Rita Diary
September 30, 2005 PM No Situation report has been issued today
September 29, 2005 The Texas Emergency Mangement Agency has now issued its 10th Situation Report. Selected highlights are below:
"Department of Public Safety (DPS): DPS is responding as necessary to emerging issues
and is assisting in the execution of the state re-entry plan. The Texas Highway Patrol
Division, in conjunction with the Drivers License Division, and the Criminal Law Enforcement
Division, through the District Emergency Operations Centers, are coordinating and providing
law enforcement support activities and resource management to local and county entities in
the 17 county impact area. Emergency Operations Centers are located in Lufkin, Conroe,
Houston, Tyler, Bryan, and Beaumont. A total of 650 Troopers have been mobilized from
throughout the state and deployed to the seventeen county impact area to support the 350
Regional Troopers, local, and county law enforcement entities. Activities include: police
patrol; man and secure road closure points; security for points of distribution, shelters, and
public buildings; escort for emergency response vehicles and evacuees to and from the
impact areas."

"Department of State Health Services (DSHS): DSHS continues to operate its toll-free
number for the location of evacuated hospital and nursing home patients (877-623-6274; in
Austin 512-458-7189). DSHS has reached an agreement with Wal-Mart to honor
prescriptions for those in areas affected by Rita. DSHS is also coordinating with state and
county assets to begin mosquito control operations within the affected areas. Spray
treatments will begin in Chambers, Jefferson, and Orange counties 29 Sept. DSHS officials
continue to request for additional nurses to volunteer to provide care for people in special
needs shelters. Volunteers should call DSHS at 1-800-942-5540 or online at
www.dshs.state.tx.us."
"DAMAGES: Many counties in affected areas remain without power, communications, water
or basic services. Preliminary damage assessments are underway, but reports are impeded
due to lack of communications and the focus of local resources remains on basic life support
operations. As of 5:00 p.m. 29 Sept 05
             Single Family Dwellings    Mobile Homes             Apartments
County Destroyed Major Minor Destroyed Major Minor Destroyed Major Minor
San Jacinto 250 500 1,500            250 1,000 500                      0 0 0
Polk             29 329 305                 24 242 325                        0 10 5
Trinity           15 80 295                   21 75 301                          0 3 2
Totals        294 909 2100           295 1317 1126                      0 13 7"

September 29, 2005  PM OFFICE OF ELECTRICITY DELIVERY AND ENERGY RELIABILITY (OE)
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Gulf Coast Hurricanes1 Situation Report #6
September 29, 2005 (3:00 PM EDT)
HIGHLIGHTS
  Currently, 747,958 customers are without electric power in Texas and Louisiana. Restoration is largely complete for customers who can receive power in Arkansas and Mississippi.
  Service restoration to the seven refineries served by Entergy in the Port Arthur and Lake Charles areas remains a priority following establishment of grid service to generation sources. Limited 230KV service into the Port Arthur area is projected within a few days, but the refineries are served from the 69KV system that has substantial structural damage. In the Lake Charles area, Entergy projects limited transmission service for restoration and clean up activities in a few days and start up capacity in a week to 10 days.
  In support of restoration activities in Texas, Secretary Bodman issued an order to authorize and direct CenterPoint Energy to temporarily connect and restore power to Entergy Gulf States, Inc. Entergy, CenterPoint, TXU, and American Electric Power met yesterday to finalize a strategy for power restoration in the Entergy service area."

Entergy Texas Update:

·         Progress continues in Texas, but Entergy expects a long and difficult restoration in the aftermath of the extensive damage caused by Hurricane Rita.

·         Texas Customer Information Centers open today. Entergy is asking that customers only visit the centers if they have an electrical emergency to report.

  • Huntsville - Huntsville/Walker County Chamber of Commerce 1327 11th St Huntsville, Tx  9AM-5PM Closed EOD Friday

  • The Woodlands - 9425 Pinecroft Dr., The Woodlands, TX 77380 7am-6pm— closed EOD Friday

  • Conroe - 2802 North Frazier, Conroe, TX 77303 7am-6pm.closed EOD Friday\

  •  New Caney - 21001 US HWY 59, New Caney, TX 77357 7am-6pm

  • Cleveland - 400 FM 2025, Cleveland TX 77327 7am-6pm

September 28, 2005 PM The Texas EMA has just issued its 9th Situation Report (PFD).   Selected sections:
"Public Utility Commission (PUC): Repair crews are out in the affected areas restoring
services. There are extensive outages throughout the area with the heaviest concentration in
Galveston, Harris, Montgomery, and Jefferson Counties. The South Texas Nuclear Project
(STP) is up and running normally. Power was restored to Bowie, Upshaw, Marion, and Camp
Counties. Power has been restored to over one million Texans; approximately 379,000 still
remain without power."
"Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ): TCEQ examined the dam on Lake
Livingston today and he indicated there is not an eminent risk of failure. A fly over of Lake
Conroe Dam has revealed damage to the riprap. TCEQ staff formed ground recon teams with
EPA and START contractors. They are in route to Port Arthur in response to reports received
from Chemtel and the EPA. There are numerous facilities in Houston that the EPA wants
inspected."
"Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ): TDCJ has begun to move offenders
evacuated from the hurricanes’ path back to their original units. The Lewis, Polunsky,
Goodman, Hightower, Stiles, Plane, Henley units remain on generator power. Additional
offender moves should be completed today."
"Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC): The HHSC continues to provide
bottled water for evacuees. The 2-1-1 Texas System is currently responding to calls about reentry
routes, special needs, and the location of hubs through 25 Area Information Centers
(AIC)."
"Texas Work Force Commission: TWC will coordinate post-event activities in affected areas
to ensure employment and unemployment services are provided, working with Local
Workforce Development Boards in the response locations. TWC has posted a Hurricane Rita
information web page at www.twc.state.tx.us. The page will post pertinent information related
to service availability."
"Texas Department of Insurance (TDI): TDI is coordinating with the insurance industry and
issuing public information regarding preparations for response and recovery. The TDI
Commissioner of Insurance has issued nine bulletins regarding Hurricane Rita which are
posted on the TDI website (www.tdi.state.tx.us)."
September 28, 2005 AM Because The  Texas EMA was late in issuing its situation report yesterday we don't expect that they will issue a new report until tommorow.  We will be updating the page through out the day as other reports come in.  If you have a question or report please post it to our message board
September 27, 2005 PM The Texas EMA has just issued its 8th Situation Report (PFD).
"CURRENT SITUATION:
A. Current Priorities:
1. Support Mass Care assets and resources.
2. Assist local jurisdictions in accomplishing damage assessments.
3. Provide support and coordination for local response and recovery operations.
4. Return citizens to evacuated areas.
B. Impact Areas:
Chambers, Hardin, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Newton, Orange, Shelby, Nacogdoches, San Augustine, Sabine, Angelina, Trinity, Walker, Polk, Tyler, and San Jacinto Counties are declared disaster areas.
The following river in East Texas continues to experience minor flood levels: Attoyac Bayou near Chireno."
"Public Utility Commission (PUC): Repair crews are out in the effected areas restoring
services. There are extensive outages throughout the area with the heaviest concentration in
Galveston, Harris, Montgomery, and Jefferson Counties. The South Texas Nuclear Project
(STP) is up and running normally. Power was restored to Bowie, Upshaw, Marion, and Camp
Counties. As of today, power has been restored to 1 million Texans; approximately 480, 000
still remain without power."

Points of Distribution (PODS): Set up in the following locations to provide consistent and
efficient receiving and distribution of basic commodities.

9/27/2005 HURRICANE RITA Points of Distribution (PODS)
POD # CITY COUNTY FACILITY ADDRESS CONTACT PHONE #
1 Deweyville Newton Sub Courthouse Off HWY 12, Spur 272 Fred Ashworth
2 Buna Jasper 1st Baptist Church HWY 96 409-384-5417
3 San Augustine San Augustine High School Don Michael 936-275-2424
4 Hemphill Sabine Sheriff Dept 310 Main St Tina Warren 409-787-2266
5 Lufkin Angelina Brookshire Bros John Redditt Drive Kenneth Williams 936-633-0215
6 Orange Orange Police Dept. 201 8th St Ken 409-998-7495
7 Center Shelby Tyson Processing 1009 Hwy 87 936-598-2450
8 Jasper Jasper Airport Mark Allen 409-383-6168
9 Newton Newton Airport Truman Daughtry 409-379-3636
10 Woodville Tyler Fire Department 409-331-0874
11 Liberty Liberty Fire Department Leroy Hanel 936-336-4559
12 Dayton Liberty 33 Town Center Chief Douzat 936-258-7621
13 Nacogdoches Nacogdoches High School 4310 Appleby Sands Victoria Koenning 936-559-2662
14 Anahuac Chambers Courthouse 404 Washington Jimmy Sylvia 409-267-8295
15 Livingston Polk 115 W Mill St Kenneth Hambrick 936-327-0329
16 Kountze Hardin Teresa Willey 409-246-5119
17 Kirbyville Jasper
18 Coldspring San Jacinto
19 Alabama Coushatta Polk 571 State Park Rd 56 936-563-1105
20 Groveton Trinity 936-642-1746
21 Colmesneil Tyler
22 Onalaska Polk Jackie Long 936-646-5846
23 Pineland Sabine
24 Fairmont Sabine
25 Milam Sabine

DAMAGES: Many counties in affected areas remain without power, communications,
water or basic services. Preliminary damage assessments are underway, but reports are
impeded due to lack of communications and the focus of local resources remains on basic life
support operations.
Designated Texas Counties

September 26, 2005  AM We are still waiting to see if the Texas Emergency Management Agency will issue a Hurricane Rita Situation Report today.  In the mean time if you have any information to share about the disaster please post a  message to our Discussion Board.  In the mean time other reports have come in.  Fuel, water, ice, and food are going out in truck convoys to all affected areas from the Reliant Center in Houston. Each county receives a push package each day. The convoys have priority on the roads and DPS troopers are escorting them. Electricity is the major problem. Major electrical transmission lines are out from Louisiana.  Estimates are that electricity will be up in 2-3 weeks. Generators are still needed for the operation of triage centers.  Newton County needs at least two more shelters for evacuees. There is a shortage of hospital beds in some counties.  People with special needs are still being moved from affected counties.  There is a shortage of cots in some of the evacuation centers.  Supplies are arriving into the disaster areas to take care of these and other problems.  Some counties have complained about the lack of help having been received. Control of the mosquitoes population needs to be addressed.  There is reportedly a shortage of law enforcement officers in some areas, a need for dialysis units, portable oxygen, showers, porta potties, cots, and additional shelter needs.
If commercial gas stations have electricity, they can call 512-424-7836 to make arrangements for delivery of gasoline.
September 25, 2005
The Texas Emergency Management Agency has now issued its 7th Hurricane Rita Situation Report.
"B. Current Priorities:
1. Conduct Search and Rescue Operations
2. Support Mass Care assets and resources.
3. Monitor and support emergency fuel deliveries along evacuation routes.
4. Assist local jurisdictions in accomplishing damage assessments.
5. Provide support and coordination for local response and recovery operations.
6. Return citizens to evacuated areas.
C. Potential Impact Areas:
Brazoria, Chambers, Galveston, Hardin, Harris, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Newton, and Orange Counties have issued mandatory evacuation orders.
The Trinity River Authority requested the activation of the emergency alert system to broadcast a mandatory evacuation for portions of Polk, San Jacinto, and Liberty Counties below Lake Livingston Dam. Emergency releases from the dam will cause rapid rises on the Trinity River below the Lake Livingston Dam. People living in areas located below the dam that had flooding during the flooding of October 1994 should immediately move to higher ground. DPS Beaumont reports that Lake Livingston is releasing 80,000 cfm to avoid breach in dam.
The rivers of East Texas are experiencing rises to minor flood levels at the following locations: Trinity River near Goodrich, Ayish Bayou near San Augustine, Attoyac Bayou near Chireno, and Neches River near Town Bluff."
" DAMAGES: Preliminary damage assessments are ongoing in the affected areas.
Jasper County - No electricity, water system degraded
Newton County - No electricity in Newton & Deweyville, water system degraded
Sabine County - No electricity in county, water system degraded
Chambers County - Numerous power lines/poles down, water system partially operable, major Roads blocked w/debris
Harris Co & Houston - Roads blocked w/debris, towns & homes report flooding
Harris Co, La Porte – Residential Losses: one destroyed, two with major damage, 75 with minor damage, 377 affected
Harris County, Baytown - Minor wind damage to structures, one mobile home destroyed
Orange County, Beaumont - Oil spill vicinity ExxonMobil refinery, release of nitrogen (leaking pressure vessel) vicinity Air Liquide facility, Beaumont DDC radio tower down, minor damage to Beaumont Ford Center, minor structure damage, and a few mobile homes destroyed. ExxonMobil Refinery 1795 Burt St requested additional security due to lack of staffing. ExxonMobil Chemical 11432 Hwy 90 requested additional Security due to lack of staffing
Orange, Chambers, Jefferson Co - Minor structure damage to wood framed structures, few collapsed structures
Orange County, Port Arthur - Minor structure damage, few mobile homes destroyed; Port Arthur PD station flooded, temporary station set up in local Holiday Inn
Orange County, Port Arthur & Sabine Pass - Four new oil spills identified via Rail Road Commission and reported to GLO
Orange Co, Nederland - 10% of homes destroyed, 20% of homes with major damage, 70% with minor damage
Polk Co - No power in Polk Co
Jasper Co, Kirbyville - City has no power, expected repair no earlier than 30 Sept
Lake Livingston Dam - Trinity River Authority follow up assessment states TRA no longer concerned that dam may fail"

September 24, 2005
The Texas Emergency Management Agency has now issued its 6th Hurricane Rita Situation Report.
The One Star Foundation: The Foundation “Texas Responds” donation and volunteer hotline is 1-800-707-6768. The donations and volunteer web site is www.texasresponds.org. The website has a feature that displays a map of donations drop-off sites and describes what each site is accepting.
TEEX has established a Unified Command for Search and Rescue (SAR) Operations at Reliant Park in Houston. The Joint Air/Ground Coordination Team has been activated and is in place at Reliant. 1st Air Force Command & Control team is co-located there. The 7 FEMA US&R Task Forces from San Antonio moved to Reliant and are staged there.

TXDOT also continues to deliver fuel to areas in need and assist stranded motorists. They are encouraging the systematic safe and orderly return of 2.7 million people in 1.3 million vehicles and are asking them to consider waiting several days before returning so as to alleviate traffic congestion. The Governor’s Office has provided the following return schedule for evacuees: Sunday - residents may return to communities west of I-45 and North of I-10, including residents of Tomball, Woodlands, Waller, Hockley, Katy, Brookshire and surrounding communities; Monday - residents may return to communities west of SH-35 and south of I-10, including residents of Richmond, Stafford, Rosenberg, Sugarland, Pearland, and surrounding communities, plus all Houston residents inside Loop I-610; Tuesday - residents may return to all remaining areas east of I-45 and north of I-10 up to the Liberty and Chamber county

Texas Department of Insurance (TDI): TDI is coordinating with the insurance industry and issuing public information regarding preparations for response and recovery. The TDI Commissioner of Insurance has issued nine bulletins regarding Hurricane Rita which are posted on the TDI website (www.tdi.state.tx.us).

Public Utility Commission (PUC): Repair crews are out in the effected areas restoring services. There are extensive outages throughout the area with the heaviest concentration in Galveston, east Harris County, and in downtown Houston.

Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS): DFPS has contacted facilities and foster homes about disaster evacuation plans. A telephone line, 1-800 Foster/Adopt, is available for reporting relocation and contract information to Child Protective Services (CPS).

Texas Work Force Commission: TWC will coordinate post-event activities in affected areas to ensure employment and unemployment services are provided, working with Local Workforce Development Boards in the response locations. TWC has posted a Hurricane Rita information web page at www.twc.state.tx.us. The page will post pertinent information related to service availability.

   -- Texas  DoPS Hurricane Evacuation Maps and Information  For road closure information in Texas visit the Texas DoT web site: Expressway.  Some Texas Local Emergency Management Offices
are online. Some agencies have been having problems with their servers. The Hydrometeorological Prediction Center is forecasting approximately 11.44 inches of rainfall within 24 hours around the eye of Rita at landfall.
September 23, 2005 8 PM EDT - update Rita is now located near Shreveport, LA.  Maximum sustained winds have fallen to  near 40 mph.  Tropical force winds extend 60 miles from the center.  Rita is expected to drop 3 to 6 inches of rainfall along its path.  Isolated tornadoes are possible in AR, LA, and MS.
A lot of people want to know the condition of their town or home.  At this point the damage assessment process is underway.  I called the Texas Department of Emergency Management and asked if they would please put information on the web site ASAP. If you are in a disaster area, know of someone who is, or if you have personal knowledge of damage or lack of damage in the area please post a message on the board or e-mail me personally at host@disastercenter.com
September 23, 2005, 5 PM EDT update the center of Tropical Storm Rita is located about 25 miles south southwest of Shreveport, LA. Maximum sustained winds are at 50 mph. Isolated Tornadoes are possible today and Sunday over LA, MS, and AR. Rita is now moving toward the north and expected to move toward the north and northeast in the next 24 hours.
September 24, 2005 2 PM EDT Tropical Storm Rita is now located between Shreveport and Lufkin TX. Sustained wind speeds are estimated be 65 mph, with higher gusts. Otherwise our earlier update is still valid.
The State of Texas has issued its 5th Rita Situation Report. -- We have updated our Shelters and Evacuation sections.   Our Flooding section has a number of resources for determining the extent of flooding in the States, and check out   Watch, Warning and Advisory Display and  National Weather Warnings maps below which also are linked to flooding information resources
September 23, 2005 11 AM EDT update  The center of Rita is now located near Jasper, T X. Maximum sustained wind speeds are now 75 mph. Hurricane forece winds extend 35 miles from the center and tropical force winds extend up to 140 miles.  Over the next few days rainfall totals of 10 to 15 inches are possible over east TX, western LA, and sothern AR. Isolated tornadoes are possible over east TX, Louisiana, Southern AR, and Mississippi.  
Hurricane Rita was expected to cause two disasters to take place.  The first is taking place now, as hurricane force winds and a storm surge damage coastal areas cause damage along the track of the Hurricane. The second  disaster will be flooding due to Rita stalling over east northeast Texas.  A third disaster has been the governments' response to the approach of Rita and its response to the aftermath. The problems that took place during the evacuation were not due to acts of nature, but were a man-made disaster. If they were isolated problems, which had never taken place before, fixing them would be a simple matter.  Yet, the problems aren't isolated.  They have taken place before. The question is how deep do the problems go?   As the Disaster Center continues its reporting on Rita, we will interject into these reports and place on our discussion board information and articles dealing with this issue, because, as we noted in one of our earlier reports, "Houston we have a problem," and I would add at this point; America, we have a problem. -- The Disaster Center
September 24, 2005 8 AM EDT After making landfall near the TX/LA boarder as a category 3 hurrricane, Rita is now a category 2 hurricane located between Japser and Beaumont, TX. Maximum sustained winds have decreased to around 100 mph. Hurricane force winds extend out from the center 85 miles and tropical force winds 205 miles. Coastal storm flooding should subside later today.   Rainfall totals of 10 to 15 inches are expected over east Texas and western Louisiana  Rita is expected to slow down and stall over east northeast Texas, and over two feet of rainfall is forecast to fall over that and nearby areas in surrounding states.
Additional rainfall amonts of 3 to 5 inches are possible over southeast Louisiana.

Link to Movie of Gulf of Mexico water vapor animationClicking the image at the right will open an animation of water vapor over the Gulf of Mexico.

September 23, 2005 11 PM EDT The eye of Hurricane Rita is a few hours from landfall near the Louisiana/Texas border. Other than its proximaty to land there is essentially no change in the earlier forcast which is located below.
We have switched the weather radar over to Lake Charles.  The eye is plainly visible. 
Texas has made a graphic available containing damage estimates should Rita make landfall as a category 4 or 5 hurricane.  Florida has issued its 11th Situation Report.

September 23, 2005 5 PM EDT Hurricane Rita's forecast path has shifted a little more to the east. The NHC is now forecasting that Rita will make landfall near day break Saturday south of Port Arthur, Texas.  Rita is now  125 miles southeast of Port Arthur and moving towards the northwest. Maximum sustained winds are at 125 mph.  Coastal flooding is expected as tides will be about 15 feet above normal with tides as high as 20 feet at the head of bays. Hurricane force winds should be experienced as far as 100 miles from landfall along Rita's path. Rainfall amounts of 3 to 5 inches are anticipated as far east as southeast Louisiana and will be accompanied by tides 4 to 6 feet above normal. Rita is expected to produce 8 to 12 inches of rainfall around the landfall area.  Rita is expected to stall in far northeast Texas and drop over 2 feet of rainfall and western Louisiana as Rita is expected to meander for a few days in far northeast Texas. Isolated tornadoes are possible in eastern Texas, and southern Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.    
Rita is now showing on Lake Charles Weather Radar
September 23, 2005 2PM EDT update At 1 PM CDT Rita was 190 southeast of Galveston, TX. Rita is moving towards the  northwest at 10 mph and weakening, with winds at 125 mph. It is still expected to be a category three hurricane at landfall.
The State of Texas has issued its 4th Hurricane Rita Situation Report.  The State of Florida has issued its 10th Hurricane Rita Situation Report. The State of Louisiana not yet issued any hurricane situation report.

We have a number of resources on the site that are useful for monitoring things such as steamflow.  We invite you to explore these resources. While it is still operational you can observe the hurricane's approach on Lake Charles Weather Radar.
September 23, 2005 The forecast for Rita is essentially unchanged from our earlier updates. The only point we would emphase at this time is that Rita is expected to stall somewhere in northeast Texas. Areas of NE Texas, SE Oklahoma, SW Arkansas, and NW Louisiana may experence rainfall totals in excess of 2 FEET!
September 22, 2005 Florida has issued its 9th Hurricane Rita situation report (PDF).
September 22, 2005 8 PM EDT  Hurricane warning is in effect from Port O’Connor Texas to Morgan City Louisiana. A hurricane warning means that hurricane conditions are expected within the warning area within the next 24 hours. Otherwise there have been no significant changes to the forecast.

September 23, 2005 11 AM EDT update Katrina is weakening.  It should make landfall as a category 3 hurricane. The storm surge forecast is down to 15 feet, except at the  head of bays where it may run as high as 20 feet.  Isolated rainfall amounts of 20 inches is forecast, with 8 to 12 inches expected around the area of landfall. Otherwise the early forecast, including the track, is still valid.
September 23, 2005 8 AM EDT In 24 hrs. Hurricane Rita will come ashore and begin moving inland somewhere between Houston and Beaumont Texas.  At this time there is about a 50% probability that Rita will be a category 5 hurricane according the latest forecast of probability the National Hurricane Center. Once it moves on shore Rita is forecast to stall in northeast Texas.  Widespread destruction of property is expected along the coast by a storm surge that is estimated to reach at least 15 feet under Rita's center.  Rita will cause wide spread destruction as hurricane force winds of at least 140 miles per hour will be rotating around Rita's center at landfall. Within and area around the eye wall tornadoes will form causing isolated areas to experience the effects of wind speeds in excess of 200 mph.  A storm surge with large battering waves of at least 15 feet and as much a 20 feet will accompany Rita's eye wall as it hits the coast. In coastal areas as much as 15 inches of rain fall is expected in isolated areas.  Inland, Rita will stall dumping over 2 feet of rainfall in part of northeast Texas and neighboring states, where wide spread flooding is expected.

September 22, 2005 5 PM EDT  Rita expected to make landfall as a dangerous category 3 hurricane. Rita's projected path has shifted to near the Louisiana boarder with Texas.  Rita's maximum wind speeds are now 145 mph.  Hurricane force winds extend 60 miles from the center, and tropical force winds 205 miles.  A coastal storm surge of 15 to 20 feet is expected along with large battering waves. Rain fall accumulations of 12 to 15 inches are possible along Rita's path and isolated totals of 24 inches are possible, as Rita is expected to slow down and meander for  a few days over northeast Texas..  Rainfall amount of 3 to 5 inches are possible in New Orleans.  Areas where tides are now running about 2 feet above normal along the Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama coasts should expect tides 3 to 5 feet above normal.
The State of Florida has issued its 8th Hurricane Rita Situation Report

September 22, 2005 2 PM EDT  Rita now a strong category 4 hurricane. All other aspects of early forecasts are still valid.
September 22, 2005 11 AM Computer models  now indicate Rita will make landfall at Galvetson.  Rita's wind speeds have dropped to 165 mph. Hurricane force winds extend 85 miles out from center and tropical force winds 185 miles from center.  Coastal storm surge of 15 to 20 feet above normal is expected where Rita crosses land.  Tides in Louisiana and Mississippi can be expected to be 3 to 4 feet above normal.  Rainfall amounts of  8 to 10 inches can be expected , with isolated amounts of 15 inches expected in portions of southeast Texas and southwestern Louisiana. Computer models are predicting that Rita will stall for a couple of days over northeast Texas. Florida has released its 8th Hurricane Rita Situation Report (PDF)

September 22, 2005 8 AM update - Since our last update there has been no significant change in the forecast. 
It is a very bad sign when communications break down before a disaster takes place. The State of Texas Emergency Management web site has not placed an updated situation report on its web site since the 20th, and has not issued a press release on its web site since the 19th.  This is not to say that it hasn't conducted press briefings, but it is bad sign because it indicates that the emergency management staff is so overwhelmed that it doesn't have time to communicate its message by the most direct and effective means available.  By not putting its "disaster message" on its web site an emergency management agency actually increases the amount of work that it (and everyone else) has to do to communicate the "disaster message".
My concern is with mitigating a disaster. There are about 48 hours before landfall and it doesn't get easier to fix this problem after the hurricane hits.  "Houston, there is a problem." -- Christopher Effgen

September 22, 2005 - With winds now at 175 mph and a minimum central pressure of 26.49 inches, Rita is a category  5 hurricane.  At this time it appears that Rita will be a category 4 hurricane at landfall.  There has been no significant change in Rita's forecast track.

Tides are currently running near normal along the Mississippi and Louisiana coasts in the areas affected by Katrina. Tides in those areas will increase up to 3 to 4 feet and be accompanied by large waves over the next 24 hours, and residents there could experience some coastal flooding.

Heavy rains associated with Rita are forecast to begin to affect the western and central Gulf of Mexico coastal areas Thursday night into Friday. Rita is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 8 to 12 inches with isolated maximum amounts of 15 inches over the central to upper Texas coast. Rainfall amounts of 2 to 4 inches will be possible across southern Louisiana... Including the New Orleans metropolitan area. After Rita moves inland total rain accumulations of 5 to 10 inches will be possible over eastern Texas and central and eastern Oklahoma during Saturday and Sunday.
The computer model runs are split one group brings Rita over the Houston-Galveston area another tracking it farther west .Galveston Weather Radar

September 21, 2005 8 PM  With a minimum central pressure of 26.52 inches, Rita is now the third most intense hurricane on record in the Atlantic Basin.

September 21, 2005 7 PM  For those IN THE SURGE ZONE only...for those who are needing assistance in evacuating please contact, phone number 3-1-1.  Florida has just issued its 7th Hurricane Rita Situation Report (PDF).

September 21, 2005 - 5 PM -- With winds now estimated to be 165 mph, Rita is officially a category 5 hurricane.  There has been no change in the forecast track.  Rita is expected to be at least a category 3 hurricane at landfall. Hurricane force winds extend up to 70 miles from the center.  Tropical force winds extend 150 miles in the northern semicircle. Hurricane watches for portions of the Texas and Louisiana coast are being issued.  The Louisiana watch is being issued as a precaution due to the proximity of Rita.
Texas  DoPS Hurricane Evacuation Maps and Information  For road closure information in Texas visit the Texas DoT web site: Expressway.  Some Texas Local Emergency Management Offices
are online. Some agencies have been having problems with their servers. The Hydrometeorological Prediction Center is forecasting approximately 11.44 inches of rainfall within 24 hours around the eye of Rita at landfall.
September 21, 2005 - 11AM  Rita now may be a category 5 hurricane, technical problems with Hurricane Hunter aircraft prevent confirmation of this.  Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center and tropical force winds extend up to 140 miles.  The minimum central pressure is estimated to be 27.88 inches. Florida's sixth Hurricane Rita Situation Report is now available.
September 21, 2005 - 8 AM update Rita is now a category 4 hurricane. The National Hurricane Center has shifted Rita's projected path slightly to the west.  The NHC is also forecasting that Rita will likely be category 4 hurricane at land fall. Galveston County began implementing its mandatory evacuation order this morning
Septempber 21, 2005 - Rita is now a category 3 hurricane. Today Hurricane Rita will almost certainly bloom into a category 4 hurricane. If anything can be said to be positive about this it is that hurricanes rarely maintain such a high intensity for a long period.  For that reason Rita is likely to make landfall as a category 3 hurricane or less, Friday evening or Saturday morning. The Texas Department of Emergency Management has released its Situation Report #3 (PDF). The report indicates that it is preparing to implement its evacuation plans and describes the kinds of effects that can be expected to coastal areas from category 3, 4 and 5 hurricanes. For road closure information in Texas visit the Texas DoT website: Expressway. For links to  Texas City and County Emergency Management Sites

Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center...and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 140 miles.  Storm surge flooding of 4 to 6 feet above normal tide levels...along with large and dangerous battering waves...are still possible in the Florida Keys in areas of onshore flow. Coastal storm surge flooding of 1 to 3 feet is possible along the extreme southeastern Florida coast. Storm surge values will gradually decrease today in all areas.

Rita is expected to produce additional rainfall accumulations of 2 to 4 inches over the Florida Keys and the southern Florida Peninsula...with isolated storm total amounts of 12 inches. Rainfall totals of 6 to 10 inches are possible over western Cuba and 1 to 3 inches over the northern Yucatan peninsula, with isolated maximum amounts of 20 inches over portions of western Cuba

Isolated tornadoes will be possible over south Florida and the Florida Keys
September 20, 2005 2 PM update - Rita is now a category 2 hurricane. The State of Texas has just released a Situation Report (PDF) covering its activies through 4 PM 9/19/2005. The State of Florida has just released its forth Situation Report (PDF). There is no change in the forecast track.

September 20, 2005 - 11 PM update The forecast track for Rita is consistent  for the next 36 hours.  While there is some variation in the computer generated track after that point the models all bring Rita ashore in Texas. The other change of note is that the forecast wind speeds of Rita have increased.  Rita is expected to be a category four hurricane by tomorrow evening.  Florida has issued its 5th Situation Report (PDF) for Hurricane Rita.

September 20, 2005 - 8 PM update Rita's wind speeds have increased, it is now a strong category 2 hurricane, located about 65 miles WSW of Key West. At the present time the center is still visible on Key West's weather radar.

September 20, 2005 Noon update - Rita is now a Hurricane Rita.  The center of Rita is plainly visiable on the latest Keywest Weather Radar image.  There have been no significant changes in the National Hurricane Center's forecast since this morning, but it is important to remember that it can change. Katrina'a forecast path was consistent for several days.  It was only two days before actual landfall that the forecast path did change.

September 20, 2005 8AM update -- Florida's Rita Situation Report #3(PDF)  provides detailed information on evacuations, road closures, and  emergency activation's.  We are waiting for Texas to update its last situation report (PDF), which was issued on Sunday. Rita's forecast track remains consistent with previous forecasts.  The some of the lastest computer model runs show Rita falling short of becoming a major hurricane (category 3 or greater).

September 20, 2005 - 5 PM The path forecast for Rita remains the same.  There is some difference in the model predictions for Rita's wind speed.  The National Hurricane Center's advisory reflects a median forecast wind speed of 135 MPH, a category 4 hurricane, it should be kept in mind that it could be higher.  Maximum sustained winds are near 100 mph. with higher gusts. Rita is a category two hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale. Strengthening is forecast during the next 24 hours. Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center.  Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 140 miles. Sand Key just reported sustained winds of 60 mph and a gust of 92 mph.  Varadero Cuba measured gusts to 60 mph. Storm surge flooding of 4 to 6 feet above normal tide levels...along with large and dangerous battering waves are still possible in the Florida Keys in areas of onshore flow.  Coastal storm surge flooding of 2 to 4 feet is possible along the extreme southeastern Florida coast, but gradually decreasing this evening. Rita is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 4 to 8 inches over the Florida Keys...central and western Cuba.   With isolated maximum amounts of 10 inches...except up to 20 inches over portions of western Cuba.  Rainfall amounts of 4 to 6 inches are possible across the southern Florida Peninsula.  There is possibility of isolated tornadoes over south Florida and the Florida Keys. 

September 20, 2005 -- Rita could become a category 2 hurricane as it approaches the Florida Keys, Tuesday morning. Rita is still forecast to make landfall south of Houston late Friday or early Saturday morning. tropical force winds extend outward up to 120 miles out from the center. Storm surge flooding of 6 to 9 feet above normal tide levels...along with large and dangerous battering waves are possible in the Florida Keys in areas of onshore flow. Coastal storm surge flooding of 3 to 5 feet is possible along the extreme southeastern Florida coast...and in the northwestern Bahamas. Rita is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 4 to 6 inches over the central Bahamas...with possible isolated maximum amounts of 8 inches. Rainfall accumulation of 3 to 6 inches is possible for eastern Cuba. Storm totals of 6 to 10 inches...with isolated maximum amounts of 15 inches...will be possible in the Florida Keys...and central and northwestern Cuba...with 3 to 5 inches possible across the southern Florida Peninsula.

September 19, 2005 PM update:  The National Hurricane Center (NHC) is now shifting he long term projected path of Rita to the east.  The NHC is now projecting that Rita will make land fall around noon EDT Saturday directly south of Houston, with a 50% probability that it will be a category 3 of greater hurricane. Rita is expected to be a category one hurricane before hitting the Florida Keys, which can expect a storm surge of 6 to 9 feet.  One the Extreme southern coast of mainland Florida a storm surge of 3 to 5 feet is possible. The Latest Key West Weather Radar can be viewed near the bottom of this page. 

September 19, 2005 -- Rita began moving through the Bahama's this morning with winds of 50 miles per hour. Rita is expected to produce rainfall accumulations of 4 to 6 inches over Turks, Caicos and over southeast and central Bahamas.  Isolated  maximum amounts of 8 inches of rainfall are possible with isolated maximum rainfall total accumulation of 6 to 10 inches possible before Rita travels through the Bahamas. For the Florida Keys Rita is expected to produce 6 to 10 inches of rainfall with isolated maximum of 15 inches possible in some areas. South Florida is anticipated to receive from 3 to 5 inches of rainfall. 

A storm surge of 6 to 8 feet above normal is possible in coastal areas along Rita's path, with coastal  storm surge of 3 to 5 feet possible along the extreme southeast coast of Florida..  Rita is now moving in more of a northeast path than previously predicted.  It is anticipated that in 12 to 24 hours a high will begin building over Louisiana that will gradually turn Rita westerly.  By Tuesday morning Rita should emerge into the Gulf and by Wednesday morning it is anticipated that Rita will become at least become a category 2 hurricane and by Thursday morning at least a category 3 hurricane.

At this time Rita is forecast to be a least a category 3 hurricane at landfall, which is forecast to take place some time Friday along the Texas/Mexico coast. While the probability is extremely low, another storm that we are tracking Hurricane Philippe may still posse a threat to New England.

September 18, 2005 -- On its currently forecast track Rita should not present much of a threat to Florida.  At the current time it appears that Rita will not develop into a hurricane until Tuesday morning when it will be several miles south of Florida's Keys.  It is when Rita enters the Gulf of Mexico that it is expected to become a category 2 hurricane or greater.  Meanwhile people living on the east coast should be keeping an eye out for Tropical Storm Philippe.

September 17, 2005 -- Today the 18th numbered Tropical Depression was named.  Number 18 is destined to become Hurricane Rita.  At this point in time it is apparent that Rita will  threaten the Bahamas an it is apparent that it will threaten Florida before traveling into the Gulf of Mexico.
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Rita@disastercenter.com