Hanna Forecast To Become Hurricane Before Landfall


Tropical Storm Hanna continues to strengthen as it moves westward through the Gulf of Mexico toward the South Texas coast. The storm is expected to continue to intensify overnight, becoming a Category 1 Hurricane before making landfall Saturday afternoon near Corpus Christi. Governor Greg Abbott is urging residents along the coast to prepare for the storm, as Hurricane Warnings have been issued for the Corpus Christi and Port Aransas areas. Abbott is specifically urging those in the path of the storm to heed those warnings. The state began positioning emergency resources earlier today in preparation for the storm.

For the Houston area, the outer bands of the storm are expected to bring widespread thunderstorms, some with heavy rainfall, over the next 24 hours. Rainfall totals of 1-3 inches are projected for most of Southeast Texas, with higher amounts possible near the coast.

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...

* Baffin Bay to Sargent Texas

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for...

* Baffin Bay to Mesquite Bay Texas

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...

* Mouth of the Rio Grande to Baffin Bay Texas

* Mesquite Bay to San Luis Pass Texas

A Storm Surge Warning means there is a danger of life-threatening

inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline,

during the next 24 hours in the indicated locations.

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected

somewhere within the warning area, in this case within the next 24

hours. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed

to completion.

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are

expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case within

the next 24 hours.

Interests elsewhere along the Texas and Louisiana coasts should

monitor the progress of Hanna.

DISCUSSION AND OUTLOOK

----------------------

At 700 PM CDT the center of Tropical Storm Hanna was

located near latitude 27.3 North, longitude 94.4 West. Hanna is

moving toward the west near 10 mph (17 km/h), and this motion should

continue through Saturday morning. A gradual turn toward the

west-southwest is expected Saturday night and that motion should

continue through Sunday. On the forecast track, the center of Hanna

should make landfall along the Texas coast within the hurricane

warning area Saturday afternoon or early evening.

Maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph (85 km/h) with higher

gusts. Strengthening is forecast, and Hanna is expected to become a

hurricane before the cyclone makes landfall on Saturday. Steady to

rapid weakening is expected after Hanna moves inland.

Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 60 miles (95 km)

from the center.

The estimated minimum central pressure based on surface

observations is 998 mb (29.47 inches).

HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND

STORM SURGE: The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the

tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by

rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water could

reach the following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated

areas if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide...

Baffin Bay to Sargent TX...including Corpus Christi Bay, Copano

Bay,

Aransas Bay, San Antonio Bay, and Matagorda Bay...2 to 4 ft

Mouth of the Rio Grande to Baffin Bay TX...1 to 3 ft

North of Sargent to High Island TX...including Galveston Bay...1 to

2 ft

The deepest water will occur along the immediate coast near and to

the right of the landfall location. Surge-related flooding depends

on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle, and can

vary greatly over short distances. For information specific to your

area, please see products issued by your local National Weather

Service forecast office.

WIND: Hurricane conditions are expected in the warning area

Saturday afternoon. Tropical storm conditions are expected to begin

in the warning area later tonight or Saturday morning.

RAINFALL: Hanna is expected to produce 5 to 10 inches of rain with

isolated maximum totals of 15 inches through Sunday night in south

Texas and into the Mexican states of Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, and

northern Tamaulipas. This rain may result in life-threatening flash

flooding, rapid rises on small streams, and isolated minor to

moderate river flooding in south Texas.

3 to 5 inches of rain is expected along the upper Texas and

Louisiana coasts.

SURF: Swells generated by Hanna are expected to increase and affect

much of the Texas and Louisiana coasts during the next couple of

days. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip

current conditions. Please consult products from your local weather

office.

TORNADOES: A brief tornado or two will be possible, mainly

overnight, across portions of the upper Texas and Louisiana Coasts.


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