The dryness over Texas and wind shear are working in our favor and keeping the strongest winds associated with Tropical Storm Beta at bay.
Expect showers to begin after lunchtime on Sunday, looking to be hit or miss as the outer bands of the system make a first impression on Louisiana before sliding west to Greater Houston, Beaumont and Port Arthur getting the first Sunday splash and dash.
For the Texas Gulf Coast, these are the National Weather Service’s current alerts:
A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...
* Port Aransas, Texas to Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge, Louisiana, including Copano Bay, Aransas Bay, San Antonio Bay, Matagorda Bay, Galveston Bay, Sabine Lake, and Lake Calcasieu
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...
* Port Aransas Texas to Morgan City Louisiana
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for...
* Port Mansfield to Port Aransas Texas
TS Beto has begun the swing to the west toward the Texas coastline, arrival expected at around 1 Monday morning.
According to the National Hurricane Center, this is their most recent update for Sunday morning:
At 700 AM CDT (1200 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Beta was located near latitude 27.1 North, longitude 92.8 West. Beta is moving toward the west-northwest near 3 mph (6 km/h). A slightly faster motion toward the west-northwest is forecast to occur during the next couple of days, followed by a slow down and a turn to the north and northeast Monday night and Tuesday. On the forecast track, the center of Beta will move toward the coast of Texas and will likely move inland Monday or Monday night.
Maximum sustained winds are near 60 mph (95 km/h) with higher gusts. Little change in strength is forecast during the next couple of days before Beta reaches the Texas coast. Weakening is anticipated once Beta moves inland.
So it appears Monday and Tuesday will be rain events bringing the potential for flooding to low-lying areas, especially along the coast where storm surge is also going to be present.
The Hurricane Watch has been cancelled for coastal communities.
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Fort Bend, and the inland areas of Brazoria, Galveston, Harris, Jackson, Matagorda, Southern Liberty, and Wharton counties.
A Storm Surge Warning and Tropical Storm Warning are in effect for the Brazoria Islands, Chambers, and the coastal regions of Brazoria, Galveston, Harris, Jackson, Maragorda, Galveston Island and Bolivar Penninsula, and Matagorda Islands.
Brazoria County Judge Mark Sebesta is calling for voluntary evacuations in low-lying areas, and the same for Chambers County.
Houston Public Works has temporarily lowered Lake Houston by half a foot.
In Matagorda County, voluntary evacuations for the community of Sargent, the township of Matagorda and the Bayfront area of the city of Palacios.
photos: National Weather Service