Watching the satellite images of Hurricane Ike, all I could think of was the book Isaac's Storm by Eric Larson, which was about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900 that killed 8,000 people. They're talking about a storm surge of up to 25 feet for Galveston when Ike hits. The seawall is only 17 feet high. There are a lot of people, perhaps thousands, who aren't planning on evacuating from Galveston Island, which strikes me as insane. I read a warning issued by the weather service which stated that anyone staying there faces "certain death." I don't know if that's hyperbole or not, but I think we are about to see some serious destruction along the Texas coast, and Galveston may get the worst of it.
Today's probably a good day to gas your car up, by the way, because there may be some serious damage to the oil refining infrastructure in south Texas from this storm. Don't be surprised if we're looking at $4.00 gas (or worse) again in a very short time.