- Tropical Storm Nicholas hit the Texas coast with heavy rain after making landfall as a hurricane.
- Authorities warned that storm Nicholas could cause deadly flash flooding.
- The storm had maximum sustained winds of 75 mph and threatened to bring up to 20 inches of rain in some areas.
Hurricane Nicholas made landfall on Tuesday off the Texas coast, before losing strength and degrading to a tropical storm, although it continued to pose a significant risk of flooding, reported The Associated Press.
The system threatened to discharge almost 50 centimeters (20 inches) of water in areas of the Gulf of Mexico coast, including the same region that was hit by Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and Louisiana, already battered by storms this year.
Storm Nicholas could bring deadly flash floods
Authorities warned that Storm Nicholas could also cause life-threatening flash flooding in the heart of the southern United States. Nicholas made landfall in the eastern Matagorda Peninsula and was about 50 kilometers (30 miles) south southwest of Houston, Texas, with maximum sustained winds of 110 kilometers (70 miles) per hour, according to the National Hurricane Center of United States, based in Miami.
Nicholas was the 14th named storm of the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season. The storm was moving north-northeast at 15 kilometers (9 miles) per hour and its center was expected to pass slowly over southeast Texas on Tuesday and over southwestern Louisiana on Wednesday. The biggest unknown with Nicholas was how much rain it would leave in Texas, especially Houston, which is prone to flooding.
Texas bath alert
Almost the entire coast of the state was under a tropical storm warning that included potential flash floods and urban flooding. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said authorities placed rescue teams and resources in the Houston area and along the coast.
In Houston, officials were concerned that heavy rains expected Tuesday could flood streets and flood homes. Authorities deployed offshore rescue vehicles throughout the city and erected barricades at more than 40 places that tend to flood, Mayor Sylvester Turner said.
Power outages due to storm
As it passed through Texas and Louisiana, Tropical Storm Nicholas caused power outages as well as storm surge threats Tuesday morning as it moved inland from the Gulf Coast, NBC News reported.
According to poweroutage.us, more than 320,000 customers were without power in Texas and another 95,000 in Louisiana also suffered power outages, just after 4 a.m. ET. In Houston, authorities urged residents to leave the streets and seek shelters.
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