Saturday, September 24, 2005

Hurricane Rita makes landfall

Saturation television coverage continued on CNN as hurricane made landfall this morning. The storm which had earlier been downgraded to a category 3 hit land at 03:40 ET [07:40 UTC/GMT]. As many as 2.5 million people had evacuated from its path, but many still remain in areas currently being hit by the severe wind which are bringing gusts of up to 166 km/h [104 mph]. CNN has reported more than 1.5 million homes without power, and the outlook for the energy business does not look good as over 200 oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico have been shut down. The area affected by the extreme weather is vast, stretching from New Orleans to as far as Houston. The eye of the storm hit close to the Texas and Louisiana state borders and heavy rain has brought flooding to many areas. Meteorologists expect 40 cm [15"] of rain in the next 24 hours and some parts of the affected area are already a metre deep in water. The true extent of the damage will not be clear until first light. But there have already been tragedies. Yesterday a bus carrying elderly evacuees, burst into flames and exploded. Twenty four people died in the incident. It is not clear what the cause was.
[10:04 GMT 24/09/2005]

No comments: