HOLT, Fla., Aug. 25, 2017–Hurricane Harvey reached category 4 strength this evening hours before making landfall in central Texas.
Landing between Port Aransas and Port O’Connor, Texas, the National Hurricane Center is calling for catastrophic flooding associated with this storm.
The last time a category 4 hurricane made landfall in the United States was in 2004 when Hurricane Charley came ashore in southwestern Florida. Hurricane Ike was the last hurricane to hit Texas when it landed on Galveston Island at category 2 strength in 2008.
According to the National Weather Service in Mobile, wave swells from Harvey began approaching the region this afternoon.
Additionally, moderate rip current risk begins this evening at all beaches through at least the weekend, according to a NWS Mobile advisory.
Holt and the surrounding area could experience heavy rains and severe weather next week, depending on Harvey’s track, according to NWS Mobile.
The eye of Hurricane Harvey is nearing the coast of Texas, centered at 7 p.m CDT about 35 miles east of Corpus Christi.
Reports from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate maximum sustained winds remain near 130 mph with higher gusts.
Little change in strength is likely before landfall, according to the center.
Calling the storm a dangerous hurricane, the NHC predicts the storm to make landfall during the next few hours, bringing life-threatening storm surge, rainfall and wind hazards to portions of the Texas coast.
Harvey’s forward motion will slow down considerably during the next 24 hours and is likely to move little between 36-to-120 hours, exacerbating heavy rainfall and flooding threats across southern and southeastern Texas, according to the NHC.
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, Texas.
Catastrophic and life-threatening flooding is expected across the middle and upper Texas coast from heavy rainfall of 15-to-30 inches, with isolated amounts as high as 40 inches, through Wednesday.
The NHC anticipates gradual weakening after the center moves inland, but Harvey’s slow motion will keep a significant portion of its circulation over water, which may slow the weakening rate.
Current tracking models show Harvey head back into the Gulf and making a second landfall southwest of Houston early next week.
Staff and National Hurricane Center