Nicholas could hit Texas as hurricane; 2 other systems being watched
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC/AP) - As Tropical Storm Nicholas edges toward Texas, the National Hurricane Center is watching two systems in the Atlantic, one of which could eventually develop off the coast of the Carolinas.
Nicholas could reach hurricane strength before landfall
Tropical Storm Nicholas is gathering strength and threatening to blow ashore in Texas as a hurricane that could bring up to 20 inches of rain to parts of the Gulf Coast.
As of 1 p.m. Monday, Nicholas was about 70 miles away from Port Aransas, Texas and was moving toward the north near 12 mph.
The center of Nicholas will continue to pass just offshore of the coast of south Texas Monday afternoon and move onshore along the coast of central Texas later Monday evening.
Data from an Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft and NOAA Doppler weather radars indicate that maximum sustained winds remain near 60 mph with higher gusts. Strengthening is forecast Monday afternoon and evening, and Nicholas could be near hurricane strength when it reaches the northwest Gulf coast. Weakening is anticipated on Tuesday and Wednesday while Nicholas moves over land.
Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 115 miles from the center. During the past few hours, NOAA buoy 42020 located southeast of Corpus Christi, Texas, reported a sustained wind of 49 mph and a gust to 56 mph.
The estimated minimum central pressure is 29.59 inches.
The storm is likely to strike the same area hit by Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and storm-battered Louisiana.
Nearly all of the state’s coastline was under a tropical storm warning that included potential flash floods and urban flooding. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says authorities placed rescue teams and resources in the Houston area and along the coast.
Disturbance off southeast coast could develop over next several days
Live 5 Meteorologist Chris Holtzman said there is a medium chance of development for a system off the coast of the Bahamas over the next five days.
“We’ll have to monitor this over the next five days, but it looks like if it were to develop even into a depression, it would be far enough away from us where maybe the only impacts would be some rough seas and rip currents,” he said.
The National Hurricane Center expects the system to form into a tropical depression by the middle of the week while it moves north-northwestward across the western Atlantic.
System off African coast could be depression by late this week
A tropical wave located over the far eastern tropical Atlantic is producing an area of disorganized cloudiness and thunderstorms and it has a higher chance of developing over the next five days, Holtzman said.
It will likely be days before the system’s path would start to become clear. The system is currently moving across the eastern Atlantic at about 15 mph.
The peak of hurricane season passed by over the weekend. The next two names in the 2021 list are Odette and Peter.
Hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.
Copyright 2021 WCSC. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.