July 23, 2008
Posted: 11:39 AM ET
We received this today from CNN producer Alex Walker, who's on the beach at South Padre Island as Hurricane Dolly comes ashore as a Category Two storm. Alex provides a little background on setting up a live shot from a storm while keeping the team safe (He's with meteorologist Reynolds Wolf, photographer Stuart Clark, field tech Jerry Appleman, and satellite truck operator Michael Humphrey).
I haven't seen a single person on or near the beach this morning. Yesterday, as we started feeling winds and rain from some of Dolly's outer bands, residents and tourists flocked to the shore here to look at the white caps and even do a little surfing. Today, the only people I've seen are media crews covering the story.
Reynolds Wolf (in red), live from the beach at South Padre Island. Photographer Stuart Clark is in yellow.
I rented a 2-story banquet hall/restaurant for our liveshots, so we have enough room to accommodate CNN, CNN NewsSource and Univision. NBC wanted this location, and it felt great to scoop the competition and secure a great spot. We have power, and a safe place to take cover. It's nice to be able to duck inside in between liveshots, as the winds are fierce now. The eye of the storm may pass right over us.
We are stuck on this island, to ride out the storm, as the causeway to the mainland is closed. I'm watching some unbelievable surf right now. Off the balcony is a narrow public beach access between the dunes. Last night, bulldozers piled additional sand – about 20 feet long and 5 feet high – to close the passageway. Water is piling up on the other side. I hope it works!
Alex Walker CNN Science & Technology Producer
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