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NICHOLAS BLOG: Nicholas downgraded soon after it hits Texas shore

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Posted at 3:21 PM, Sep 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-14 09:47:45-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Stay up to date on the latest information regarding "Nicholas" right here.

Click here for the Latest Forecast.

Click here for Road Closures.

Click here for School Closures.

9/14/21, 8:45 a.m - Despite its lack of staying power in the Coastal Bend, Nicholas packed some winds of sizable wallop during its trip through the area.

Here's a list of the highest sustained speeds at several locations during the storm, courtesy of the National Weather Service.

  • Port O'Connor, 64 mph, 6:45 p.m. Monday
  • 11 SSE Austwell, 53 mph, 5:18 p.m. Monday
  • Victoria, 51 mph, 6:45 p.m. Monday
  • Port Lavaca, 48 mph, 7:22 p.m., Monday
  • 9 SE Aransas Pass, 47 mph, 12:48 p.m., Monday
  • Matagorda Island, 46 mph, 6:12 p.m., Monday
  • Corpus Christi, 45 mph, 11:30 a.m., Monday
  • Seadrift, 45 mph, 7:24 p.m., Monday
  • Laguna Shores, 45 mph, 12:25 p.m., Monday
  • Port Aransas, 44 mph, 1:06 p.m., Monday
  • Rockport, 43 mph, 5:13 p.m., Monday
  • Packery Channel, 43 mph, 9:54 a.m., Monday

9/14/21, 6:40 a.m. - Tropical Storm Nicholas still is having an effect on the flight schedules at Corpus Christi International Airport.

United and Southwest Airlines canceled all flights on Monday leaving the facility due to weather conditions.

The cancellations also included arrivals.

And on Tuesday, three of five departing flights scheduled for today have also been canceled.

All three were headed for Houston.

9/14/21, 6:30 a.m. - Here is the latest information as of 4 AM CDT concerning now Tropical Storm Nicholas

...All Tropical Warnings have been canceled for South Texas and the Middle Texas Coast...

...Coastal Flood Advisory in effect for all area beaches through this afternoon...

...High Risk of Rip Currents remains in effect through this evening...

...Small Craft Advisory conditions continue today...

What's New:

  • Nicholas has been downgraded to a Tropical Storm after making landfall overnight
  • The Tropical Storm and Storm Surge Warnings have been discontinued
  • A Coastal Flood Advisory is now in effect across all area beaches

Summary of 4 AM CDT Information: Location: 29.3 North, 95.6 West, or 76 miles northeast of Port O'Connor, Maximum Sustained Winds: 70 MPH, Present Movement: North-northeast at 9 MPH, Minimum Central Pressure: 994 mb

Forecast:Nicholas has been downgraded to a Tropical Storm after making landfall about 10 miles to the west-southwest of Sargent Beach, TX early this morning as a hurricane. Nicholas will continue to move slowly to the northeast later today and then eastward by Wednesday over Louisiana. Nicholas should weaken further today and is forecast to become a Tropical Depression by Wednesday. Since this storm has moved out of our local area, all Tropical Storm and Storm Surge Warnings have been discontinued. However, hazardous coastal and marine conditions will linger over South Texas and the Middle Texas Coast today, with 1-3 feet of coastal inundation possible across area beaches mainly north of Port Aransas, along with westerly winds of 25-30 knots and up to 12 feet seas over the waters. In addition, a High Risk of Rip Currents remains in effect though this evening across all Gulf-facing beaches. Isolated to scattered showers and thunderstorms will be possible today, primarily over the coastal waters, but most inland locations should remain dry.

South Texas Impacts:

Tides: Up to 1-3 feet of inundation north of Port Aransas, and 1-2 feet south of Port Aransas.

Seas:

- Nearshore: 6-8 feet this morning.

- Offshore: 8-12 feet this morning.

Rip Current Risk: The High Risk of Rip Currents continues through this evening.

Next Update:This will be the final email briefing regarding Tropical Storm Nicholas from the National Weather Service Office in Corpus Christi. The National Hurricane Center will continue to issue forecasts as Nicholas affects East Texas and parts of Louisiana and Mississippi.

9/14/21, 6:15 a.m. - It's back to school for all students across the Coastal Bend today.

A majority were closed on Monday because of Tropical Storm Nicholas.

But as of today, everybody is back in the classroom.

Also, Del Mar College is opening all facilities today as classes will resume as normal on Tuesday. All employees at the college are back on typical working hours.

9/14/21, 6:10 a.m. - Even after most of the effects of Nicholas have left the area, Oso Creek on the city's south side still is being monitored.

It's understandable, considering the location is notorious for flooding.

Around noon Monday, the creek reached almost 10 feet, just a foot short of flood action stage.

But the creek currently is around 8 feet and is expected to continue receding throughout the day today.

9/14/21, 5:27 a.m. - Tropical Storm Nicholas may have largely missed the Coastal Bend, but it still could cause some life-threatening flash floods across the southern United States during the next couple of days.

The latest update from the National Hurricane Center provides the latest details on Nicholas, which dropped to a tropical storm early Tuesday morning.

* Storm Surge Warning is in effect for Sargent to Sabine Pass including Galveston Bay.

* A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Matagorda to Cameron.

* A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for Sabine Pass to Rutherford Beach Louisiana.

For more of the latest Nicholas report from the National Hurricane Center, read here.

9/14/21, 1:08 a.m - Nicholas made landfall about 10 miles west-southwest of Sargent Beach, southeast of Bay City. The Category 1 hurricane blew into the area with 75-mph winds at about 12:30 a.m.

10:10 p.m. - Chief Meteorologist Dale Nelson reports Nicholas is now a hurricane.

9:40 p.m. - Nueces County appears to have been spared from the worst of Tropical Storm Nicholas, with storm surge and rain bands likely to continue until mid-morning. The next high tide occurs at 1:34 a.m. Tuesday morning, and combined with the passing storm surge, should be the last extraordinary coastal flooding associated with this storm.
Beach Access Road 4 was closed Sunday, restricting vehicular traffic at that point due to The berm closing Beach Access Road 4 will be removed Tuesday morning, with vehicular access restored by 10 a.m. Nueces County beaches remained open to the public throughout the storm.

8:00 p.m. Nicholas update:

9/13/21, 6:15 p.m.- Refugio County is closing the American Red Cross Shelter.

9/13/21, 5:44 p.m.- The Aquarium reports they will be open regular hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm.

9/13/21, 3:57 p.m.- The city of Corpus Christi is closing down Gulf Beach Access Roads 2, 3, and 3A, Newport Pass Road, Zahn Road, and Whitecap Boulevard through the duration of the effects of Tropical Storm Nicholas. Parks and Recreation Operations crews and the National Weather Service are reporting flooding from the storm surges, with beach driving lanes underwater with the surges reaching the sand dunes.

The NWS forecasts two to four foot depth of floodwater on our beaches, making them hazardous for drivers. Currently the beaches are still open to pedestrians, but visitors are asked to be cautious and follow the Beach Flag Warning System.

The city will reassess the storm conditions at sunrise.

9/13/21, 2:45 p.m. - Fulton Fire & Rescue: The National Weather Service has just notified the Aransas County EOC that the first large rain band from TS Nicholas is moving into Aransas County with winds of up to 60mph recorded in the band. If you haven’t done so already, please secure all lose items you may have in your yard. If you are out and about, please return home. Firefighters are standing by at the station to respond as needs arise.

9/13/21, 1:20 p.m. - Corpus Christi police tweeted that all roads are open.

9/13/21, 1:10 p.m. - San Patricio County has issued a Disaster Declaration.

"Tropical Storm Nicholas posed a threat of imminent disaster, including severe flooding, widespread and severe property damage, and loss of life in the County of San Patricio, Texas, and, the County Judge of San Patricio County, Texas believes it necessary to declare a state of local disaster on September 13,2021, due to imminent threat from Tropical Storm Nicholas"

9/13/21, 12:47 p.m. - TxDOT's Port Aransas ferries are currently operating and will continue to operate unless weather conditions makes operation unsafe or U.S, Coast Guard orders TxDOT to pause ferry service due to inclement weather.

TxDOT spokesman Rickey Dailey said that three 28-vehicle ferries currently are in operation.

9/13/21, 12:40 p.m. - Port Lavaca Mayor Jack Whitlow said he is more concerned about flooding from Tropical Storm Nicholas that potential wind damage.

The swiftness of this storm will mean that his city won't be evacuated as thoroughly as it has been before other major storms in the past, Whitlow said.

"We're prepared as we can be," Whitlow said. "We will get flooding. We have prepared for this, but this (storm) can up so fast that we really didn't have time to evacuate as much as usual. I don't think it will be bad. The problem will be the cleanup. This time we'll have to do it with a town full of people."

9/13/21, 11:57 a.m.- City of Corpus Christi testing, vaccination, and Regeneron Therapy Clinics will be closed on Monday and Tuesday. The COVID-19 testing site at Christus Spohn Hospital Memorial will be closed, along with the vaccination site at 4040 Greenwood Drive and the Regeneron Therapy Clinic at Physicians’ West Plaza.

The Regeneron Therapy Clinic at Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds will stay open through the storm.

9/13/21, 11:30 a.m. - Both United Airlines and Southwest Airlines have canceled all flights in and out of Corpus Christi International Airport for the rest of the day.

The city says American Airlines is showing all flights leaving and arriving as scheduled on Monday. Depending on weather conditions, that is subject to change. Make sure to check your flights.

9/13/21, 11:30 a.m. - The city of Mathis has canceled its city council meeting tonight.

But Mathis City Manager Michael Barrera said his staff is ready for the storm after an extensive meeting Monday morning.

"You always prepare for these events and we all have had a little bit of experience in going through these events," said Barrera, a former employee for the City of Corpus Christi who has endured several storms over his professional career. "You get through it, debrief and learn."

9/13/21, 11:06 a.m.- The National Weather Service-Corpus Christi says that Jim Wells County and Live Oak County have been removed from the Tropical Storm Warning list. Additionally, Kleberg County has been removed for Storm Surge.

9/13/21, 10:43 a.m.- The city of Corpus Christi has announced the following road closures:

  • Tarlton Street from Churchill Drive to Ayers Street
  • Zahn Road

9/13/21, 10:02 a.m. - The Kleberg County FEMA Dome in Kingsville will be opening at 10:30 a.m. Monday behind H.M. King High School.

It will provide a place of shelter for people who need a dry place to stay during the storm.

The county also will be providing transportation for anybody who needs a ride to the facility, Kleberg County Judge Rudy Madrid said.

Please call 361-455-9402 for assistance.

9/13/21, 8:57 a.m. - A flood warning is now in effect for Oso Creek, according to the National Weather Service.

9/13/21, 8:55 a.m. - The Corpus Christi Police Department is reporting that Tarlton Street from Churchill Drive to Ayers Street has been closed because of flooding.

9/13/21, 8:40 a.m. - Gusty winds are being reported across the Coastal Bend with the approach of Tropical Storm Nicholas.

9/13/21, 8:35 a.m. - Due to flooding in the area, the detour is closed heading northbound from Texas State Highway 286 to U.S. Route 181 earlier Monday morning, the Texas Department of Transportation has confirmed.

Motorists can access US 181, Uptown, and the Bayfront by taking the northbound SH 286 Comanche Street exit.

Portable message signs are in place to alert motorists of the closure and detour.

Motorists are urged to be aware of the closure, consider using alternate routes, follow all traffic control devices, and to slow down in the work zones. All work is weather permitting.

9/13/21, 8:30 a.m. - More than 1,200 AEP customers in the Louisiana/Santa Fe area near Cole Park have lost power because of the sotrm earlier Monday morning, AEP spokesman Omar Lopez said. Officials will release an update on restoration times later today.

9/13/21, 8:00 a.m. - The latest 7AM Advisory from the National Hurricane Center has the center of Tropical Storm Nicholas located about 40 miles to the south-southeast of the mouth of the Rio Grande with sustained winds of 60 MPH with gusts to 70 MPH. Movement has slowed down to the north-northwest at 5 MPH. All previous watches and warnings are still in place. Residents are urged to stay away from all Gulf-facing beaches as dangerous and life-threatening storm surge is possible as Nicholas moves by.

The 6WEATHER Team will continue to have LIVE updates at the top of each hour on KRIS6 with the latest information from the National Hurricane Center.

9/13/21, 5:00 a.m. - Here is the latest update from the National Hurricane Center on the approach of Tropical Storm Nicholas as of 5 a.m. We'll have more updates throughout the morning.

NICHOLAS FORECAST TO CAUSE FLASH FLOODING, DANGEROUS STORM SURGE AND GUSTY WINDS LATER TODAY...

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...
* Port Aransas to San Luis Pass Texas
* Aransas Bay, San Antonio Bay, and Matagorda Bay

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for...
* Port Aransas to Freeport Texas

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...
* Mouth of the Rio Grande to High Island Texas
* Barra el Mezquital to the U.S./Mexico border

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for...
* Mouth of the Rio Grande to Port Aransas Texas
* San Luis Pass Texas to Rutherford Beach Louisiana, including Galveston Bay
* Baffin Bay and Corpus Christi Bay

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for...
* East of High Island Texas to Sabine Pass

For more of the latest information from the National Hurricane Center, read here.

9/12/21, 6:30 p.m. -Effective 5:45 p.m. Sunday, the Coast Guard Captain of the Port set port condition X-Ray for the Port of Corpus Christi and all other terminals and facilities due to the expectation of sustained gale force winds generated by Tropical Storm Nicholas that may arrive within 48 hours.

These ports and facilities are currently open to all commercial traffic and all transfer operations may continue while X-Ray remains in effect. Mariners are reminded there are no safe havens in these facilities, and ports are safest when the inventory of vessels is at a minimum. All ocean-going commercial vessels and ocean-going barges greater than 500 gross tons should make plans for departing the port.

9/12/21, 5:11 p.m. -Kleberg County Judge Rudy Madrid has ordered the closure of all Kleberg County offices September 13. The FEMA Dome at HM King High School will also be open starting at noon on Monday for anyone seeking immediate shelter during the storm. The City of Kingsville is closely monitoring Tropical Storm Nicholas that is currently forecast to impact our region Monday into Tuesday. This storm has the potential to cause heavy rainfall in our area with the heaviest rain potential occurring from Monday through the middle of next week. Tropical Storm force winds could also be a factor with sustained winds between 39 and 73 miles per hour.

9/12/21, 5:00 p.m. - AEP Texas is closely monitoring Tropical Storm Nicholas as it move towards the Gulf Coast. Although current projections estimate that the wind intensity will remain in the 30-to-40-miles-per-hour level, this projection could change. The storm is expected to bring heavy rainfall and potential power outages in some areas.

9/12/21, 3:31 p.m. - In response to severe weather threats along the Gulf Coast due to Tropical Storm Nicholas, Governor Greg Abbott today ordered the Texas State Operations Center (SOC) to increase its readiness to Level II (Escalated Response) beginning tomorrow morning at 9 a.m. central. The SOC will operate at Level II to coordinate the state’s response in support of local officials. Tropical Storm Nicholas is forecast to begin impacting the Texas coast tomorrow.

The city of Corpus Christi has barricades prepared for potential high waters. Barricades are pre-positioned near the Marina, North Beach, Flour Bluff, and Las Colonias near La Volla Creek.

9/12/21, 3 p.m. - Free sandbag distributions are taking place at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday for Corpus Christi and Kingsville residents.

Corpus Christi

  • Dolphin Park, 4703 Gulfbreeze Boulevard
  • Packery Channel Boat ramp, 149 Zahn Road

Residents will be able to take a maximum of eight sandbags per vehicle. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, drivers and passengers should wear face masks and remain inside their cars while the sandbags are being loaded.
Kingsville

  • Kingsville Sanitation Department, 1300 E. Corral Avenue
  • Precinct 3 main yard, 433 East County Road 2310

Proof of residency will be required, and each household is limited to six bags. Citizens in low-lying areas such as Ricardo, Rivera and Loyola Beach are encouraged make use of these sandbag distributions.