Galveston Scrambles to Heal its Beaches Marred by Hurricane Ike

Ike Goat Island Debris

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) _ On the long list of items that need to
be cleaned up after Hurricane Ike, Galveston's beaches rate near
the top.
They never had the whitest sand or the clearest water, but for
millions of Texans they have been an attractive vacation spot as
well as an economic staple for many businesses on the island. Right
now, they are a mess.
The beaches are littered with the remains of houses, rotting
cattle carcasses and other debris. And in some spots, Ike's storm
surge sucked all the sand into the Gulf of Mexico, leaving behind
only rocks.
Area officials have asked Congress for 100 million dollars for
restoration efforts. The money would be used to buy sand and repair
erosion control devices. A city spokeswoman calls it ``incredibly
expensive,'' but says the beaches are the area's ``number one
tourist attraction.''

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)