Hurricane Rita

By: Rebekah Baum
By: Rebekah Baum

Houston resident Maureen Coleman is likening it to a horror movie that won't end, on Thursday, she flew to Los Angeles, and from the country roads her cab driver took to the airport, she could see a sea of traffic on Houston’s highways, thousands of drivers waiting to evacuate.

"There were lines everywhere, it was horrendous, with people pulling their suitcases, carrying babies, it was horrible," says Maureen Coleman.

Maureen lives just blocks from a Bayou.

"I didn't think it was worth the chance because water comes in my backyard just from a heavy rain. And I've been fortunate the rain stops before it comes in my back door...but this time I wasn't going to chance it," says Coleman.

Marry and Morris Shalit have decided to stay, they're estimating that nearly 70 percent of the residents in their apartment building have left.

"What made us decide to stay is "A," I'm a fatalist, that's the first thing. When we saw people going seven miles in nine hours, and traffic backed up for 100 miles, we decided we wouldn't attempt to leave," says Shalit.

Mary says they're armed with necessities, and for now, their watching Rita’s path on TV, and waiting.

"We bought these big, long burning candles, canned food mainly in case the electricity fails, lots of water, lots of cold drinks, bread and snack food. They advise you that if the windows get blown out, you should go to a place that has no glass, and we have a little walk in closet in the center of the apartment, and we can sit in there," says Shalit.

Nearly two million people are fleeing the Texas and Louisiana coasts, including thousands of Katrina evacuees. Maureen says the city of Houston displayed a beautiful heart by welcoming the victims, but she believes the mayor overloaded a city that's prone to hurricanes as well.

"To overextend a city that is already in crisis mode didn't show foresight. I think it showed a good heart, but no planning for an overpopulated city. It's a terrible situation, they always said we did thinks better in Texas, so now that's for sure," says Coleman.


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