Tropical storm Nicholas gained strength from a hurricane just before hitting the US Gulf coast on Tuesday (14). The storm has touched the ground of Texas and is heading for Houston, reported the National Hurricane Center (NHC).
Nicholas blows with maximum sustained winds of 120 km/hour, with stronger gusts and carries a lot of rain in the Houston area, meteorological authorities reported.
Nicholas “is bringing heavy rain, high winds and storms to parts of the central and upper Texas coast,” the NHC said in its bulletin late Monday.
In addition to Texas, the hurricane will dump a lot of water on Louisiana.
“It’s going to be a slow-advancing storm across Texas, lasting several days, and it’s going to dump a huge amount if it rains,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Monday afternoon. “People in the region need to be prepared for extreme events with high water levels.”
Abbott said he will declare a state of emergency in 17 counties and three cities on the Texas coast, adding that boat and helicopter rescuers have been deployed or put on alert.
A man holds a child on a pier in Galveston, Texas, just before Hurricane Nicholas hits the ground in the state — Photo: Adrees Latif / Reuters
Rainfall is expected to be up to 406mm, and possibly 508mm in some isolated areas in Texas by Wednesday (15). As the storm moves northeast, it is expected to deliver up to 250mm into parts of south-central Louisiana and southern Mississippi by Thursday (16), the NHC said.