Hurricane Harvey meandered in the Gulf of Mexico for what seemed like days, as a tropical depression, then became a tropical storm that moved into Central America. Now it’s back in Gulf of Mexico and is predicted to slam into the Texas coast as a major hurricane – cat 3 or higher. In fact, the National Hurricane Center’s 4 PM CDT discussion is alarming. I added the red type.
1. Harvey is expected to be a major hurricane at landfall, bringing life-threatening storm surge, rainfall, and wind hazards to portions of the Texas coast. Preparations to protect life and property should be completed by tonight, as tropical-storm-force winds will first arrive in the hurricane and storm surge warning areas on Friday.
2. A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for much of the Texas coast. Life-threatening storm surge flooding could reach heights of 6 to 12 feet above ground level at the coast between the north entrance of the Padre Island National Seashore and Sargent. For a depiction of areas at risk, see the Storm Surge Watch/Warning Graphic at hurricanes.gov.
3. Devastating and life-threatening flooding is expected across the middle and upper Texas coast from heavy rainfall of 15 to 25 inches, with isolated amounts as high as 35 inches, from Friday through next Wednesday. Please refer to products from your local National Weather Service office and the NOAA Weather Prediction Center for more information on the flooding hazard.
4. The Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map is available on the NHC website. This product depicts a reasonable worst-case scenario – the amount of inundation that has a 10 percent chance of being exceeded at each individual location. This map best represents the flooding potential in those locations within the watch and warning areas.
Author Whitley Strieber, who co-authored The Coming Global Superstorm with Art Bell, the basis of the movie The Day After Tomorrow, has an excellent post on this potentially devastating hurricane. If the storm stalls just off the Texas coast, as the hurricane center says it may, then Strieber believes we may be seeing another Superstorm Sandy or Hurricane Katrina.
Keep Texas in your thoughts, folks!