Hurricanes Jose and Maria

At 2 p.m., the National Hurricane Center says Hurricane Jose will produce dangerous surf and rip currents along the East Coast for several more days. Hurricane Jose is located 310 miles SSW of Nantucket, Massachusets and 255 miles ENE of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.  The storm’s maximum sustained winds are 75 mph and Jose is moving north at 7 mph.

“A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Watch Hill to Hull
* Block Island
* Martha’s Vineyard
* Nantucket

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for…
* The coast of Long Island from Fire Island Inlet to Port Jefferson” – NHC 2 pm Advisory.

The National Hurricane Center expects Jose to make a turn to the northeast tonight. tonight.  “The center of Jose is forecast to pass well
offshore of the Delmarva peninsula later today, pass well to the
east of the New Jersey coast on Wednesday, and pass offshore of
southeastern Massachusetts by Thursday,” the NHC 2 p.m. advisory states.


At 3 pm. today, the National Hurricane Center says rain bands from Hurricane Maria is moving over the hard-hit Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. The potentially catastrophic hurricane is 100 miles SE of St. Croix and 195 miles SE of San Juan, Puerto Rico. Maria’s maximum sustained winds are 165 mph as it moves WNW at 10 mph. The NHC urged remaining island residents rush to complete their preparations against life-threatening storm surge, rainfall flooding and destructive winds.

“On the forecast track, the eye of Maria will move over the northeastern Caribbean Sea today, and then pass near or over the Virgin Islands overnight and Puerto Rico on Wednesday,” the NHC 2 p.m. public advisory stated.

For hurricane updates, visit, local National Weather Service products and tune into broadcast, cable, social media and other media outlets. 



Posted in Hurricane Season, National News, Weather | Tagged ,

Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma Recovery

After Hurricane/T.S. Harvey flooding 3 weeks ago, the I-Hop staff at Beechnut and 610 says the Meyerland restaurant will reopen Saturday afternoon.  Crews have been repairing the damage inside this I-Hop.

Photos: Getty, C. Lim



The smelly flood debris piles up on Ferris Drive, just 2 blocks away from Braes Bayou which overflowed during Harvey.

On Friday, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner ended all remaining curfews in the city. This Sunday, September 17th, the Hope for Harvey Candlelight Vigil will be held at  7 p.m. on the steps of City Hall, 901 Bagby Street. People are asked to bring a candle to light and stand in solidarity with survivors of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma.

On Thursday, Mayor Sylvester Turner named former Shell Oil executive Marvin Odum to lead the city’s recovery from Hurricane and Tropical Storm Harvey.

“I ask Houston Chief Recovery Officer Marvin Odum to push us forward to make our city more resilient, prepared to recover from disaster,” Mayor Sylvester tweeted Wednesday afternoon. “Odum will take no salary.”

The Houston mayor also asked landlords to allow a 30-day grace period for late rents and fees.   Harvey evacuees remain at the George Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston.  On August 30th, BakerRipley tweeted 1,030 evacuees were welcomed at NRG Stadium.

On Monday, September 11th, the American Red Cross said on its website that it has provided $45 million in financial aid to more than 100,000 households needing immediate help after Hurricane Harvey.

The City of Houston also received $91 million in advance in federal and state aid for Houston’s recovery.

The West Houston treatment plant is operating fully now, too. After Harvey, West Houston residents were asked to  limit waterwaste use.

Military planes also will do aerial mosquito spraying. Starting at sunset Thursday, aerial spraying began in Harris, Liberty and Brazoria counties.


In Florida, recovery from Hurricane Irma continues.  On Friday, Governor Rick Scott met with state and local officials in the Florida Keys about the recovery.  Scott toured Hurricane Irma damage in Naples with President Trump  on Thursday. Since Hurricane Irma devastated and flooded parts of the state, the governor, FWC officers and the Florida National Guard have been surveying the storm damage in Northeast Florida and the Florida Keys.

On Friday, Port Everglades, Port Canaveral, Port of Jacksonville and Port of Tampa are receiving fuel shipments.  The Port of Key West remains closed.  A boil water alert continues for the Keys.

The Florida Highway Patrol also is escorting re-fueling supply trucks to gas stations.  On Thursday night, Governor Scott tweeted a photo of Florida Highway Patrol escorting the National Guard on their way to missions in Miami-Dade and Doral.

As of 5 p.m. Thursday, 14 Florida counties, including Polk, Palm Beach, Desoto, Collier, Glades, Flagler, Palm Beach, Lee, Monroe and Okeechobee have curfews in effect.

A boil water alert in Hollywood, Florida was lifted Friday.

The Hollywood, Florida Police Department, federal, state and local agency investigators are doing a criminal investigation at the Hollyhills Rehabilitation Center in Hollywood.  Hollywood PD confirmed 8 elderly patient deaths at the facility — possibly related to the sweltering heat, according to some news reports.

The center’s air conditioning units were not fully functioning and the rehab center had some power, according to the initial investigation. 145 patients were evacuated from Hollyhills and received by Memorial Regional Hospital. 141 patients were residents of Hollyhills and 4 lived at the adjoining Larkin Community Hospital Behavioral Health Services.

Florida reports that at Noon Friday,  more than 1.6 million people were without power.  On Monday, the power outages peaked at 6.7 million. In the last 4 days, more than 30,000 personnel across Florida restored electricity to more than 75 percent of the state’s residents.

On Friday, more than 60 shelters remain open in Florida with over 5,600 people. Moe than 30 special needs shelters are open with nearly 2,000 people.

Vice President Pence also announced the federal government has waived the Jones Act, which waives rules to allow more fuel to get to Florida faster, according to Florida


Posted in Asian Community Houston, Florida News, Harris County News, Houston News, Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Recovery, Hurricane Season | Tagged

Hurricane Irma & Hurricane Harvey

Moody Analytics’ preliminary estimate is that Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Harvey caused $150 billion to $200 billion in damage to homes, buildings and vehicles, ABC News reports.

As of 8:59 a.m. Eastern Time Tuesday, Florida Sert reported 5,540,981 people were without power.

At 10:18 a.m. Eastern Time, Florida Sert reported  501 shelters open, including 84 special needs shelters. Some 110,820 people are staying in shelters this morning.

Florida Governor Rick Scott tweeted this morning that nearly all interstates and toll roads are open in the state. Scott also urged everyone who evacuated to listen to their local officials on when to return to their homes.  Florida airports also plan to reopen today.

Photo courtesy: Twitter, Orlando International Airport  on Monday.

Miami International Airport tweeted limited passenger and cargo flights will resume today, September 12th. Orlando International Airport and Tampa International Airport also will be open for commercial flights. All open Florida airports advise travelers to check with their airlines first.

Hurricane Irma was a statewide event in Florida, causing flooding, wind damage and power outages.  CBS News reports people are returning to the northern parts of the Florida Keys and people are returning to flooded homes in Bonita Springs and southwest Florida.

“We’re going to rebuild this state… We’re going to help every individual in this state,”  Governor Rick Scott told CBS News this morning from Jacksonville, Florida.  Scott also assured immigrants in the hard-hit farm community of Immokalee that shelters with law enforcement will accept them, regardless of their status.  Scott said he has been communicating with President Trump federal, state and local officials and seeking help for Florida’s recovery.  On Monday and Tuesday, the U.S. Coast Guard flew Scott to see Irma’s damage.

U.S. National Guard rescued storm victims from St. Maartens Island to Puerto Rico, U.S. territory.

The Southern Baptist Disaster Relief trailers are staged at Houston’s First Baptist Church. A Harvey-flooded home in the Houston area today during week 3 of recovery. Flood debris on curbs in parts of Houston are still waiting for pick-up.

For the Houston area, it’s week 3 of recovery.  Houston area students are returning to school this week under cool, sunny weather today. Roads that were closed due to Hurricane Harvey flooding or reservoir flooding are open.

Flooded residents who registered for financial aid from the American Red Cross also are having trouble collecting $400 at Walmart in Houston.  All applicants must register first with the American Red Cross and receive a confirmation email. During the last 24 hours, the ARC website is down until further notice. ARC says to keep checking back.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner has proposed a 8.9% property tax hike for 12 months to pay for Houston’s recovery from Hurricane Harvey. The tax hike goes before city council in October for public hearings and approval.

Kieu Hoang, a Southern California businessman and immigrant billionaire from Vietnam donated $5 million to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund.  Mayor Turner accepted Hoang’s generous gift on Monday. Hoang’s first job in the United States paid him $1.25 an hour. Hoang owns Northern California wine vineyards today.

“I’m here to thank the American people who allowed me to come to this country as a refugee in early 1975 at the age of 31. I am here to pay back, contribute and show my gratitude to this great country.” Hoang said.

“Mr. Hoang’s stunning generosity to a community far from his home is a beautiful demonstration of the American spirit that inspires us to reach across the miles to help our fellow citizens,” Mayor Turner said.

“The fact that he (Hoang) started his new life in America at a basic level and rose to prominence in the business world, is also a lesson for Houston as we bounce back from adversity,” said Mayor Turner. “Houston is the most diverse city in the nation, partly because of its influential Vietnamese American community.”

To donate to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, visit


Posted in Airline Travel, Airports, America Remembers, Asian Community, Asian Community Alert, Asian Community Houston, Asian Community News, Flood News, Florida News, Florida Tourism, Harris County News, Houston News, National News, Orlando News | Tagged , ,

Tropical Storm Irma – Monday

Graphic courtesy: NHC, NOAA, NWS

This morning Florida is waking up to massive power outages, flooding, rising water, debris, downed trees and power lines after Hurricane Irma hit the state and the Florida Keys hard on Sunday.  Overnight, Hurricane Irma headed toward the Lakeland area and Polk County between Tampa and Orlando. Jacksonville also is experiencing flooding and rising water as the tropical storm’s forecast track includes Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Tropical Storm  Irma continues to batter the Tampa Bay Area of 3 million people with strong wind gusts and rain this morning.  TECO reports 310,000 customers without power there, as of 8:30 a.m.

Curfews remain in effect in Miami Dade County, Tampa and other areas. Florida public schools remain closed until further notice.   Airports in Florida remain closed until damage assessments are done, supplies and flight crews arrive.

Florida Power and Light reports 3,612,070 customers with no electricity at 6 am this morning.

At 8 am Monday, Tropical Storm Irma continues to produce near hurricane force winds.   Irma is 30 miles NNE of Cedar Key, Florida and 105 miles NNW of Tampa, the National Hurricane Center says. Irma’s maximum sustained winds are 70 mph and moving NNW at 18 mph.

Below is NWS Jacksonville, Florida Radar Loop:

Here’s more from the 8 am NHC public advisory:

“A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for…
* South Santee River southward to the Flagler/Volusia County line
* Cape Sable northward to the Ochlockonee River
* Tampa Bay

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…
* Bonita Beach to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line
* Jupiter Inlet to the South Santee River
* Lake Okeechobee”

FEMA Acting Director Elaine Duke says 200,000 people are in shelters this morning.  More than 500 opened in Florida this weekend.

“Mother Nature has a mind of her own….We didn’t expect 100 mph winds around 1:30 a.m. but that’s exactly what happened, ” said Senator Bill Nelson (D) of Florida on the TODAY show this morning.

“I’m proud of how Floridians came together in the last 24 hours,” Senator Nelson said.

After spinning up the Gulf coast of Florida, Hurricane Irma turned NE and went inland between Tampa and Orlando late Sunday night and overnight into Monday.

“FEMA is stretched. The $15 billion Congress passed will be gone in a few weeks…. We’ll have to approve another down payment in October,” Senator Nelson said.

Nelson said he is proud of how Floridians responded, helping each other and how emergency management, state, city and county officials prepared residents for the storm.

As Floridians assess the damage and begin cleanup, today also is September 11th to remember all who died, including first responders. On the morning of September 11, 2001, there were  coordinated attacks by the radical Islamic group Al-Queda on the Twin Towers in New York City, the Pentagon in Washington, DC. and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

For updates and instructions, tune into social media of your local emergency management, state, city, county officials. If you have power and internet, tune into local broadcast and cable stations and online media outlets.


As Floridians assess the damage and begin cleanup, today also is September 11th to remember for all who died, including first responders. On the morning of September 11, 2001, there were coordinated attacks by the radical Islamic group Al-Qaeda on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, DC. On that day,  Americans on United Airlines Flight  93 learned of the 2 attacks from loved ones. The UA Flight 93 passengers fought back against the terrorists on board to divert the plane to crash in an open field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania to avoid another plane terrorist attack in Washington, DC.


Posted in Asian Community Alert, Florida News, Hurricane Season, National News | Tagged ,

Hurricane Irma Heading Up Florida’s Gulf Coast

 At 11 pm. Eastern Time Sunday, Hurricane Irma is 50 miles SE of Tampa, Florida. The Category 2 hurricane has maximum sustained winds of 100 mph and is moving N at 14 mph.  On radar, the eye of the storm was between Tampa and Orlando late Sunday night.

Hurricane Irma made a second landfall on Marco Island Sunday afternoon.

Graphic courtesy: NHC, NOAA, NWS

The center of Irma will continue to move over the western Florida peninsula through Monday morning and into the southeastern United States late Monday and Tuesday, the NHC advisory states.


Click for latest Composite Reflectivity radar image from the Tampa Bay Area, FL radar and current weather warnings

Above, the National Weather Service Tampa Bay Area radar loop.

Dangerous storm surge and the tide remains the major threat to Florida.  It will be a long night of watching Irma for Pinellas, Hillsborough and counties in its path. The National Hurricane Center also lowered its storm surge forecasts.

At 10 pm Sunday, Florida Power & Light reported 3,380, 510 outages across Florida.  At 11:51 pm Sunday, TECO reported 250,145 customers had no electricity in the Tampa Bay area.

First responders and law enforcement in some of Florida’s  counties have suspended their services until wind speeds decrease to 40 mph or until conditions improve. Curfews also are in effect.

NBC News reports more than 500 shelters opened in Florida. They are filled to capacity.

More beach exposed  in Tampa Bay area Sunday afternoon. Water receded back. However, Florida officials warn dangerous storm surge coming as Hurricane Irma goes northward along Gulf Coast. Photo courtesy: Alert Tampa, City of Tampa Twitter



On Sunday, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn enacted a 6 p.m. curfew, starting today.

“We know we are ground zer0 for this storm. We have avoided it for 90 years, but our time has come,”  Mayor Buckhorn tweeted Sunday afternoon.  For emergency updates in the Tampa Bay area, text 888-777.

“We can’t help you once the storm starts,” Governor Rick Scott said during an update Sarasota morning in Sarasota.  Scott urged  people needing help to call 1-800-342-3557.

Here’s more from the 11 pm. Sunday NHC public advisory:


A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for…
* South Santee River southward to Jupiter Inlet
* North Miami Beach southward around the Florida peninsula to the
Ochlockonee River
* Florida Keys
* Tampa Bay

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…
* North of Jupiter Inlet to Fernandina Beach
* North of Bonita Beach to Indian Pass
* Lake Okeechobee

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…
* North of Fernandina Beach to Edisto Beach

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…

*Jupiter Inlet southward around the Florida peninsula to Bonita Beach

*Florida Keys

*Florida Bay
* West of Indian Pass to the Okaloosa/Walton County Line
* North of Fernandina Beach to South Santee River

Storm Surge Forecasts:

Cape Sable to Captiva…4 to 6 ft
Captiva to Ana Maria Island…3 to 5 ft

North Miami Beacch to Cape Sable, including the Florida Keys.. 3 to 5 ft
Ana Maria Island to Clearwater Beach, including Tampa Bay…
2 to 4 ft
North Miami Beach to Card Sound Bridge, including Biscayne Bay…
3 to 5 ft
South Santee River to Fernandina Beach…4 to 6 ft
Clearwater Beach to Ochlockonee River…4 to 6 ft
Fernandina Beach to Jupiter Inlet…3 to 5 ft

Florida Governor Rick Scott ordered all Florida schools, state universities and colleges to be closed through Monday.

Governor Scott also activated the entire National Guard to help during and after the storm. Scott also urged Florida residents to listen to their local emergency management, city, county officials and local law enforcement during Hurricane Irma.

“This storm is bigger than our state….This is a great state and we’re going to come through very strong,” Governor Scott said.  Scott also said no expense will be spared to keep Floridians safe.

Disney World in Orlando will be closed Sunday and Monday, but WDW resorts will remain open during Hurricane Harvey.  Click on link on closures, cancellations and refunds.

Universal Studios and other Orlando attractions will be closed Sunday and Monday. However, the Universal Studios resorts will be operating.

President Donald J. Trump also approved the Florida Disaster Declaration. The president was briefed at Camp David Sunday on FEMA and Hurricane Irma.

For updates and instructions, visit, your local National Weather Service Twitter feeds and listen to city, county and emergency management officials.   If you have power, internet and cable service, tune into local television, radio and cable news channels, social media and other media outlets for updates.


Posted in Asian Community, Community Alert, Florida News, Hurricane Season, National News, Tampa Bay Area Weather, Weather, Weather Alert | Tagged ,

Houston Recovers after Harvey Flooding

It’s been 2 weeks since Hurricane Harvey hit the Texas Gulf Coast and brought flooding rain to Houston.  The cleanup and recovery continues. Above a look at Houston trying to return to normal life today.  Donors also made it easier for public school students  to be dressed for class.

Video runs 1:15

Update:  Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017

Only one center is open today to give out free student uniforms. The Denver Harbor Multi-Service Center is open from 9 a.m. to Noon or until free HISD student uniforms run out. The Denver Harbor Multi-Service Center is at 6402 Market Street, Houston, Texas 77020. Phone is 832-395-0895.



Posted in Community Events, Consumer News, Education, Harris County News, Houston News | Tagged , ,

Houston Students Receive Free Uniforms

HISD has one location open today, Saturday, Sept. 9th to give away free school uniforms to all HISD students who lost them during Harvey.  The Denver Harbor Multi-Service center is open today from 9 a.m. – Noon or until supplies run out.

Here’s the address:  6402 Market Street, Houston, Texas 77020.  Phone: 832-395-0895.

This was the line of families needing student uniforms at 2:15 p.m. Friday at the Hiram Clarke Multiservice Center in Houston. Security also was present during the HISD student uniform give-away.

Families lined up as early as 7:30 Friday morning to get free student uniforms at Hiram Clarke Multiservice Center on West Fuqua in south central Houston.  Houston Independent School District staff said the operation went well on the first day.

“I think it’s been going smoothly considering the large number of families who wanted to receive the free uniforms for their children,” said Daivd Barragato, Director of Houston Independent School District Student Assistance.

Barragato estimates more than 400 free student uniforms were handed out today at this location.  He said the uniforms came from various donors.

HISD scheduled the free student uniform give-away today and Saturday, September 9th  from  9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“We cut off the line at 2:15 p.m. to make sure we were ending on time and to be able to serve our families within the pre-designated time frame,” Barragato said Friday afternoon.

“Parents will fill out parent-student assistance questionnaires here so that staff can assist them in filling out the forms,” Barragato said.

Mujer Latina and the Houston Health Department also are presenting “Rebuilding Houston-Restoring Lives” or “Reconstruyendo Houston – Restaurando Vidas” today and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

This event is going on at the Hiram Clarke Multiservice Center, 3810 W. Fuqua and the Southwest Multiservice Center, 6400 High Star Drive in Houston from 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.  this weekend.

“We will provide food, clothing for many of our families affected by this catastrophic event, as well as assistance with Disaster Relief applications,” the event flyer stated.

For more information or para mas informacion, call Llamen at 281-606-9100.

—Carol Lim


Posted in Asian Community Houston, Harris County News, Schools and Education News | Tagged , , , , ,