Alabama's beach communities resemble ghost towns and shelters in Mobile are filling up today as Hurricane Ivan pushes Gulf waters across the main beach road in Gulf Shores. Nearby bayous are rising with spillover from heavy surf and some beach erosion already was visible.
The Mobile County Commission has declared a curfew for the entire county, including all municipalities. The curfew, effective immediately, will be from 6 p-m to 6 a-m daily until further notice.
In Baldwin County, where no shelters were open because they weren't safe enough, elderly and disabled residents were put on buses for evacuation.
It appears most residents heeded Governor Bob Riley's call to evacuate the most populated areas of Alabama's two gulf-front counties. Earlier today Interstate 65 was turned into a one-way between Mobile and Montgomery to help traffic move north more quickly.
Baldwin County assistant emergency management director Roy Wulff
said the hurricane could be the worst to hit Alabama since 1979, when fast-moving Frederic devastated the coast.
The Alabama coast is almost at dead center of Ivan's predicted path into the northern Gulf of Mexico.
Hurricane warnings are posted along a 300-mile stretch from Grand Isle, Louisiana, across coastal Mississippi and Alabama to Apalachicola, Florida.