Spooked by Hurricane Gustav's rapid move toward Category 5 strength, a million residents of the Gulf Coast fled today as a hurricane watch was issued for Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and part of Texas. Gustav is likely to become a Category 5—with sustained winds of 156 mph or more—by Sunday, and strike the coast within 36 hours.
Residents took to buses, trains, planes, and cars, clogging roadways leading away from New Orleans—which is still reeling 3 years after Hurricane Katrina flooded 80% of the city and killed about 1,600 across the region. "I don't like it," one resident said. "Going someplace you don't know, people you don't know. And then when you come back, is your house going to be OK?"