Directron.com Recovers from Hurricane Ike
We are pleased to announce that Directron.com is now fully recovered from Hurricane Ike's roof and water damages. All business activities are resumed normally. We are proud to say that Directron.com has been helping our fellow Houstonians recovering from Ike since Monday, Sept. 15. We were closed only partially on Friday Sept. 12 and completely on Saturday Sept. 13.
All of our employees and their families went through Ike safely although most of us lost power at our homes for various time period. We wish all of our Houston/Galveston customers a safe and speedy recovery as well.
Since Sept. 13, we have been operating in a recovery mode from Ike, which caused roof and water damages to our warehouse and power outtage. Here is a chronological list of milestones we reached during the recovery effort.
(1) Our showroom and will-call have been open since Monday Sept. 15, allowing many resellers and Ike victims to receive full services.
(2) Online orders have been processed and shipped since Monday, Sept. 15. (That was accomplished without power or running water in our office/warehouse Saturday to Tuesday :)
(3) There may be some delays in processing some orders due to various reasons on Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 15-16, mainly due to the lack of power, regular phone services, and emails. Thank you for undrstanding.
(4) Our regular company emails have been working since Wednesday Sept. 17
(5) Our regular phone lines are have been working since Tuesday Sept. 16
(6) Our regular fax number 713-773-9393 has been working since Tuesday Sept. 16
(7) We have resumed using our new online procedures for RMA, order disrepancy, and shipping damage report since Thursday Sept. 18
WE APPRECIATE YOUR SUPPORT DURING THIS TIME OF OUR RECOVERY. We wish everyone affected by Hurricane Ike a speedy recovery. We are here to help.
Here is our blog coverage on our experience during Ike.
Original blog was published on our user forum
You are welcome to leave comments, pictures, and info there.
Hurricane Ike Blog / Watch:
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||posted 09/12/08 13:27
Remember Rita? Friday, Sept. 12
Three years later; it's Ike. It feels like Rita all over again, especially the fact that the projected landfall point has been shifting from west of Houston to now east of Houston, which is great news for Houston.
There are a few noticeable differences:
(1) Ike is much weaker than Rita (Category 5 vs. 2 when on the gulf of Mexico)
(2) The evacuation is much more orderly. Much fewer people in Houston are panicing. The evacuation area spans a very wide arae from Corpus Christi all the way to East Texas.
(3) There are plenty supplies of gas, water, and food. Very few traffic jam.
Those are the good news.
The bad news is that Ike is still coming very close toward Houston, mainly because of its huge size. As a matter of fact, it's targeting right onto Houston at this moment although our fingers are crossed that it will continue its gradually shift toward north east side of Texas coast. UPS, FedEx, and USPS all cancelled their picking up services today (Friday). So we are arranging for drop shipping in our associate store in Dallas for some air shipments. If we missed your shipment today, we apologize for it. All orders received in the later aftnoon of Thursday and Friday may experience a delay until Monday for shipment. We hope every one understands.
Today it's actually a beautiful day so far. We only have 1/3 of our employees working here. Very few walk-in customers showed up. Our company bought every one pizza for lunch. It feels like a pre-hurricane party.
Luckily we have only one employee living on east side of Houston, where it looks like Ike may directly hit. We got his family staying in a hotel near our office, which is on the west side of Houston. If you check the hurricane map, west side of Houston should be on the good side of it, which means less than 75 mph wind from the North. You don't want to feel the wind from the south during a hurricane.
Our will-call will be closed on Saturday.
We hope all of our businesses will resume normally on Monday, Sept. 15.
Thank all those vendors and customers who have expressed a concern for our safety. We'll weather this storm better than we did three years ago with Rita. We are professionals in terms of dealing with hurricanes.
||posted 09/12/08 16:34
To board or not to board? That is the question
I was one of the last ones left the office at 3:30pm today. The sky is already cloudy and dark. There is quite a bit of wind from Northest and a few rain drops.
The high way and the streets are almost empty. Gas stations and all stores are closed. I only have half tank of gas. Hopefully that will be enough for this storm.
Some houses are boarded already. Most of them in Sugar Land have not been. I noticed that some people were putting up boards on store fronts facing south. I thought that was such a waste of time. The wind will be coming from the Northeast. Windows facing south should be fine.
A coworker told me a real story about boarding houses. One of our associates couldn't buy any plywood boards to board their house last time a hurricane hit this area. They decided to take the woods from their fences to board their windows. It turned out the hurricane was a noshow. They had to spend another whole day removing the board pieces from their windows and put them back onto their fences.
Is that funny? That is the life style for us "the gulf coasters." You just get used to it.
I decided not to board our house. I am too tired to do that right now after preparing Ike for two days in the office. I hope it would be a good decision. Fingers crossed.
||posted 09/12/08 17:12
What's up with the weekend?
Most hurricanes we have experienced in the last 15 or so years in Houston happened during the weekends. Ike is no exception. It will landfall tonight at midnight and we expect the maximum wind for about 10 hours after midnight.
What's up with hurricanes in the weekends?
Well, there are pros and cons for that. It does have less interference with work and schools (is that good or bad?). All the Houston area schools are closed on Friday. Some of the coastal ones will most likely close on Monday as well.
Perhaps the "hurricane god" also works on a 7-day week schedule?
||posted 09/12/08 17:19
Golf ball and a broken window
I just did a last-minute check-up around the house. You know what? I found a golf ball and a broken window facing the North - where Hurricane Ike is coming. I am sure there is a connection between the golf ball and the broken window. I've no idea how long the window has been broken.
What can I do? I taped it up with duct tape. Hopefully it will stand the Catetory 2 hurricane.
What a bad timing to find a broken window.
||posted 09/12/08 17:27
For those of you who never experienced a hurricane
One new co-worker asked me today: why people panic so much and they clean up the floor in the grocery store before a hurricane? What is the big deal? He is new to Houston. He has never experienced a hurricane.
I guess what happened after Katrina has forever sensitized people in the gulf coastal area for the fear of hurricanes.
The moden technology of detecting and "forecasting" hurricanes 5-7 days ahead of time causes panicing too.
On Wednesday, Ike was "projected" to aim at Corpus Christi area - some 200 miles southwest of Houston. The government started evacuating that area. Then the "projected" landfall point start to move north. As a result, all the coastal areas were gradually evacuated like a blanket being pulled from Corpus, to Port Lavaca, to Matagorda Bay, to Free Port, to Gavelston, and now Orange County in East of Texas.
That is crazy. Why start evacuating people 3 days in advance of a hurricane when there is such a huge uncertainty? Didn't we learn enough from Rita?
||posted 09/12/08 17:34
Welcome, Ike! Or, Take a hike, Ike.
Now, you know why some folks in Houston area should be scared.
||posted 09/12/08 17:56
Hurricanes vs. Earthquakes
We Texan sometimes laugh at Californians by saying "we would rather have hurricanes than earthquakes because for hurricanes we at least have a warning."
Can you imagine? What if people can predict earthquakes with 50% certainty and 50% uncertainty a few days in advance? That will for sure drive people in California nuts.
That is what we have in Texas and the gulf coasts.
||posted 09/12/08 18:12
It's now very windy outside. Maybe 40 mph? The TV station is saying that Ike is now making landfall near Galveston. Houston is 40 miles north of Galveston, which means that it will be another 4 hours before we experience the hurricane wind since Ike is moving at around 10mph.
As far as I can remember, this maybe the first time I have ever experienced true hurricane-level wind - above 75mph.
I'll let you know how it feels like.
||posted 09/12/08 18:35
A vendor in California just IMed:
Which means, "Happy Moon Festival." This weekend is supposed to be a big holiday for the Chinese and some other asian people. It's the celebration of the fall season with a full moon, which symbolizes "reunion of families." It's equivallent to Thanksgiving here in the US.
Well, we are in a big reunion alright. Everyone is hunkering down in their houses. The advise is don't go out during a hurricane. So every family is inside together. At least in Houston area for that matter.
A couple of friends just called. They must be getting bored. They are suggesting having a im-prompto party.
I would call that a hurricane watching party.
||posted 09/12/08 18:39
Today I learned a new word from TV called hurrication. During natural disasters, schools and work are often canceled. Some people may feel like taking a vacation, especially those kids. When I told my daughter on Wednesday that schools may be closed on Friday. Her answer was, "Yes," with a high five in the air.
That is what we are having - taking a hurricane vacation inside our houses watching and feeling the hurricane.
In our house, the kids are watching TV, the mom is reading a book, and I am very busy writing this blog.
||posted 09/12/08 18:45
Another golf ball story
This is a true story. It got to make you laugh.
I know a banker who puts his name on all of his Pro-V1 golf balls. For the sake of this story, let's say his name is Joe Doe. At one golf outing, Joe Doe had an errotic shot that broke someone's window. As he approached that house, a gentleman came out and asked, "Who is Joe Doe?"
He explained that his wife was taking a shower when Joe's ball broke the window, got into the shower room and scared the hell out of his wife.
He picked up that ball and found Joe Doe's name on it. Joe had no choice but admitting that was his ball and ended up paying for the broken window.
Trust me. I already checked the ball I found near my broken window earlier. There was no name on it. Damn!!!
||posted 09/12/08 18:47
Thank you for your prayers
A friend from Canada just text me:
"I hope you and your family are making out fine iwth this nature challenge so do other Houston people."
Well, if you feel like leaving us a note like that, you are welcome to do it right here. Make a post. Some of our co-workers are reading it as well.
||posted 09/12/08 19:14
Guess what flew off the shelf in a grocery store before hurricane?
I went to Krogers last evening. To my amaze, the store was not busy at all. I asked a clerk why. She said they were busy like hell earlier in that afternoon. I guess timing is everything. I missed the rush.
I wondered around and was afraid that the store might be empty by then. I found plenty of water, plenty of fruits, juices, some left over batteries, plenty beer, and, shockingly, some bread left.
Guess what has flew off the shelf first? What was absolutely sold out? Cleaned up? Empty? Nothing left?
We Texans are really spoiled... No wonder Houston is the fattest city in the country.
Maybe it's a good thing to eat a donut in the front of a donut-shaped hurricane.
||posted 09/12/08 20:03
Sugar Land Curfewed
I called a friend nearby to pick up a movie from them to watch. They told me Sugar Land will have a mandatory curfew soon. I have never experienced curfew. There goes the idea of having a party. None of the friends can make it.
Here is the news from City of Sugar Land:
The City of Sugar Land has declared a mandatory curfew within the city limits, effective 8 p.m. tonight through Saturday, Sept. 13, at 10 a.m.
The curfew coincides with the projected peak period of Hurricane Ike’s landfall and storm impact. This curfew is intended to protect our citizens who are being asked to shelter in place and to aid the police department in protecting property, as well as allow City crews to assess damage and begin clearing roadways.
As a reminder when sustained winds reach 50 miles per hour, the City’s emergency responders will also shelter in place to ensure their safety.
||posted 09/12/08 20:12
A beautiful sunset
While driving to pick up the movie, I saw many tree branches and leaves flying around already. At the same time, some people are walking their dogs, running, and bicycling. It's good that people are staying calm in the hours before the hurricane.
While outside, I discovered a beautiful sunset. Isn't it ironic? The nature gives us such a beauty before a disaster.
Sunset in Sugar Land before Hurricane Ike
||posted 09/12/08 20:38
I have always been curious on how Hurricanes are named.
It all started in 1953 when it was first named after women. Men's names were added later on 1979.
Since then, six lists of names have been drawn up. These lists are recycled every six years. There is one big exception: if the storm is so deadly or costly that name will be retired from the list and new name is selected to replace it.
The names of 2000's storms were last used in 1994
2000: Alberto, Beryl, Chris, Debby, Ernesto, Florence, Gordon, Helene, Isaac, Joyce, Keith, Leslie, Michael, Nadine, Oscar, Patty, Rafael, Sandy, Tony, Valerie, William.
2001:Allison, Barry, Chantal, Dean, Erin, Felix, Gabrielle, Humberto, Iris, Jerry, Karen, Lorenzo, Michelle, Noel, Olga, Pablo, Rebekah, Sebastien, Tanya, Van, Wendy.
2002:Arthur, Bertha, Cristobal, Dolly, Edouard, Fay, Gustav, Hanna, Isidore, Josephine, Kyle, Lili, Marco, Nana, Omar, Paloma, Rene, Sally, Teddy, Vicky, Wilfred.
2003:Ana, Bill, Claudette, Danny, Erika, Fabian, Grace, Henri, Isabel, Juan, Kate, Larry, Mindy, Nicholas, Odette, Peter, Rose, Sam, Teresa, Victor, Wanda.
2004:Alex, Bonnie, Charley, Danielle, Earl, Frances, Gaston, Hermine, Ivan, Jeanne, Karl, Lisa, Matthew, Nicole, Otto, Paula, Richard, Shary, Tomas, Virginie, Walter.
2005:Arlene, Bret, Cindy, Dennis, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irene, Jose, Katrina, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rita, Stan, Tammy, Vince, Wilma
||posted 09/12/08 20:48
Some dramatic pictures from Galveston Island today - Remember: these are taken before Ike's official arrival.
||posted 09/12/08 20:50
||posted 09/12/08 20:51
I feel sorry for people in Galveston... a price you pay for living on an island.
City of Gavelston used to be the largest city of Texas until about a decade after the Hurricane of 1900 that killed 12,000 people Houston became larger.
Now you get a sense of the rich history of hurricanes in Texas.
||posted 09/12/08 20:53
This downtown Galveston long before Ike arrives. Ike pushes the water up (called surge!)
Hurricane Ike Blog / Watch:
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Original blog was published on our user forum.
You are welcome to leave comments, pictures, and info there.