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Saturday, September 23, 2017

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Need to know: Weather service predicts ‘extensive’ flooding from Harvey


Hurricane Harvey, pictured at 2:22 p.m., is expected to make landfall on the Texas coast on Friday. | Courtesy of the GOES16 Experimental Satellite

Newly-minted Category 1 Hurricane Harvey is coming to town, and it may rise to Category 3 before making landfall near Corpus Christi on Friday.

Hundreds of miles along the Texas coast, stretching from the mouth of the Rio Grande at the border with Mexico to High Island on the Bolivar Peninsula, are under a Tropical Storm Warning through Wednesday.

UH is gearing up to face the near-tropical storm-force winds and extensive flooding from rain, according to the National Weather Service. In an alert issued at 1:09 p.m. Thursday, the service predicted 10 to 14 inches of rain that may lead to rescues and evacuations.

“Flood waters can enter many structures within multiple communities, some structures becoming uninhabitable or washed away,” the NWS alert states. “Many places where flood waters may cover escape routes. Streets and parking lots become rivers of moving water with underpasses submerged. Driving conditions become dangerous.”

Wind speeds are predicted to stay below tropical force speeds, or between 25 to 35 mph, with gusts of up to 45 mph. Limited impacts from wind are expected, but “hazardous wind is possible.”

Isolated tornadoes are also possible through the effects of the storm.

The NWS is expected to release updates to its forecasts at 4 p.m., or earlier, depending on conditions.

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