Thousands have fled low-lying areas of Texas in the projected path of Hurricane Ike, the Houston Chronicle reports. The storm is expected to get stronger before making landfall along the coast this weekend. Texas has troops and 1,350 buses on standby for evacuations. As many as a million people may move to higher ground, officials predict.
Some residents along the coast are still planning to ride out the storm, but evacuations are becoming mandatory in some vulnerable areas. Officials are urging Texans to have evacuation plans in place, emphasizing that emergency services may not be available in many areas. "People need to heed this and leave," a county judge told the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.