The Washington Post

Tropical storm heads for Texas, Louisiana

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Tropical Storm Nicholas headed toward the Texas coast Sunday night, threatenin­g to bring heavy rain and floods to coastal areas of Texas, Mexico and storm-battered Louisiana.

Forecaster­s at the National Hurricane Center in Miami said a hurricane watch was issued for the central portion of the Texas coast, with much of the state’s coastline under a tropical storm warning. Nicholas is expected to approach the middle Texas coast late Monday and could bring heavy rain that could cause flash floods and urban flooding.

Nicholas over several days is expected to produce total rainfall of up to 10 inches in Texas and southwest Louisiana, with isolated maximum amounts of 20 inches, across portions of coastal Texas through midweek.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said the state placed rescue teams and emergency medical groups on standby along the Gulf Coast. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) declared a state of emergency ahead of the storm’s arrival in a state still recovering from Hurricane Ida and last year’s Hurricane Laura and historic flooding.

At 11 p.m. Eastern time, the center of the storm was forecast to pass near or just offshore the coasts of northeaste­rn Mexico and South Texas on Monday, and hit South or Central Texas on

Monday night or early Tuesday. Its maximum sustained winds were clocked at 40 mph and it was moving north at 2 mph, though it was expected to increase in speed early Monday. Gradual strengthen­ing is possible until it reaches the coast. The storm was expected to bring the heaviest rainfall west of where Ida slammed into Louisiana two weeks ago. Although forecaster­s did not expect Louisiana to suffer from strong winds again, meteorolog­ist Bob Henson at Yale Climate Connection­s predicted rainfall could still plague places where Ida toppled homes, paralyzed electrical and water infrastruc­ture, and left at least 26 people dead.

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