Questions, Comments, and Concerns

This lovely image is not my most recent attempt at art. No, it is in fact a satellite picture of hurricane Rita that I swiped from weather.com. Update: Actually, the photo I had here was pretty cool, but I forgot to keep it from updating itself (who knew satellite images would do that?), so it vanished into the ether. Rather than have you staring at what looks like a clear and cloudless day in the Gulf of Mexico, I thought I'd throw in a reminder of your elementary school yearbook. Just pretend to...Notice that the hurricane is at least as big around as the entire Texas coastline.
Now, armed with this information, and keeping in mind the carnage and devestation caused by hurricane Katrina, would you leave?
I sure would.
Unfortunately, several members of my extended family have chosen to stay in Pearland, TX, a suburb south of Houston which is situated less than 45 miles from the coast. WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY THINKING???
I understand that gridlock and gas shortages have complicated evacuation plans. Alternately, it has not escaped me that, without having access to television, I have been aware of this hurricane for 4 days. That would have been plenty of time to "beat the rush" and head inland, if one were so inclined.
Of course, "There is always the possibility that the hurricane could miss the Houston area" and "We'll be west of the worst of it" - these arguments are hardly convincing when what we're talking about is a 400-mile wide, category 4 megastorm.
It just seems to me that staying anywhere south of Houston is a blunder of unimaginably catastrophic proportions. I've found that it pays to have a healthy respect for nature. But, who am I to judge?
All frustration aside, though, I'd much rather admit I was dead wrong on this than have to say "I told you so".