Ike moves over Houston metro

Hurricane Ike makes landfall at Galveston at 2:10am CDT 9/13/08.

Hurricane Ike made landfall at about 2am CDT Saturday morning at Galveston, TX with the eye moving right up Galveston Bay as a high-end Category 2 storm. Daylight is just starting to shed some light on the damage that Ike has left in his wake, even as the back side of the storm moves through the Houston metro area. Max. recorded wind gusts have been between 90-100 mph at several locations throughout the area. Houston Intercontinental Airport recorded a max wind gust of 82 mph, Galveston had 89 mph gusts, and Beaumont, TX (60 miles NE of Galveston) recorded a 95 mph gust. Once more video from the area comes in, I expect to see incredible damage on Galveston Island and throughout the region.
The fortunate thing, if there might be one, is that with the storm coming in directly over Galveston Bay, the expected 20′ storm surge would not have inundated the Bay and shipping channel, though 8-10′ of water was the likely surge there. Centerpoint, the power supplier for Houston Metro, is reporting 2 MILLION people without power. It will take, literally, months for everyone to regain power. The infrastructure damage has got to be incredible. I was out last night on I-40 and saw a huge caravan of utility vehicles headed west, likely to help out in the restoration efforts.

Below is a radar image taken at 6:30am CDT as the storm was over Houston.

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Meteorologist Erik Proseus
15 years ago

That’s why in all advisories issued by the Hurricane Center and every press briefing/statement I heard from Houston or other places ahead of the storm, they said NOT to concentrate on where/when the center makes landfall. Most people that live in areas affected by these things know that the center is not necessarily the worst, but a few hours either side (when the eyewall affects your location) is the worst.

You do have to have a way to identify where the center of the storm is, however.

Good questions though!

15 years ago

Its a little misleading then isn’t it? If you hear that the storm hits at a certain time then it SOUNDS like that’s when the brunt of it is received to my ears anyways, huh?

Meteorologist Erik Proseus
15 years ago

Landfall is defined as when the center of the eye (or center of the hurricane) crosses land. Certainly that is not when the strongest weather hits. The lat/lon points used to describe where the storm is located is the center of the low pressure system (which is what a hurricane is – a massive low pressure system). When that reaches land, you have landfall. Last night, that occurred at 2:10am on Galveston.

15 years ago

I’ve never understood how it is determined when the storm actually hits. In this case it was, what? 2:10A.M.? Is that when the eye hits? I thought the center of the eye was actually quite calm. From looking at the radar all day yesterday it looked Galveston was getting the worst of it around early evening Friday.