Hurricane Ike moved away from Cuba and into the Gulf of Mexico late Tuesday - now a category one hurricane that could strengthen to a category three.
Forecasters worried that Ike could regain power in the Gulf's warm waters - this after the storm ripped across Cuba.
Ike hit the communist island on Sunday - where it moved from east to west - destroying homes - topping telephone lines and bringing down trees.
Resident Bernardo Martin:
SOUNDBITE: Resident Bernardo Martin saying (Spanish):
"People have left their homes because their tin roof tops were destroyed by the wind."
On Tuesday, heavy rains continued in Cuba - even as Ike headed northwest.
Out in the open waters - the storm brought on winds reaching 75-miles-per hour.
Forecasters have projected the storm's most like projected path directs it towards the middle of the Texas coast - dangerously close to the offshore oil patch...that provides a quarter of U.S. oil.
Sarah Irwin, Reuters.