Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Horrifying predictions

I've been following the blog of a Dr. Jeff Masters on Wunderground. This afternoon's entry is particularly chilling:

"There are two hurricane hunter aircraft in Rita this afternoon. The NOAA hurricane hunters found a central pressure of 934 mb at 11:17 am, and the Air Force hurricane hunters found a central pressure of 923 mb at 1:02pm. This incredible drop of 11 mb in 105 minutes is the fastest pressure fall I can ever recall seeing in a hurricane. Rita is now at or very close to Category 5 status. With an eye diameter of 25 miles, an eyewall replacement cycle is not likely today, and Rita may intensify to a level close to Katrina's strongest point--902 mb."

He goes on to tell us that:

"Texas's luck is about to change. Rita, looking more and more like a nightmare copy of Katrina somehow displaced in time, will make sure of that."

I had the good fortune to visit Houston and Galveston a few times when I lived in Louisiana. At the time, I was embarrassingly ignorant of the history of the region, and had no idea that the charming city of Galveston was nearly wiped out by a hurricane in 1900. Six thousand souls perished then.

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