Texas submerged and a flying shark: Footage shows devastation of storm Nicholas as it heads for Louisiana

Fourteen inches of rain dumped on Gulf Coast, where 200,000 were still without power

Gino Spocchia
Wednesday 15 September 2021 14:38 BST
Tropical storm Nicholas brings heavy rain to Texas, US

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Half a million homes and businesses were without power amid flooding brought about by storm Nicholas, which dumped six inches of rain on Houston, Texas, and 14 inches along the Gulf Coast.

Drone footage from Tuesday showed Surfside Beach, a town 90km (56 miles) southeast of Houston, submerged by floodwaters and dozens of homes damaged.

The town, just east of the Matagorda Peninsula, was where Nicholas made landfall early Tuesday – when it was downgraded from a Category 1 hurricane to a tropical storm.

Fierce winds were also seen early on, with the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami recording wind speeds of 45mph as Nicholas hit Texas. The storm itself, however, is moving slowly, and toward Louisiana.

As much as (30.5 centimetres) of rain was recorded along the Gulf Coast after Nicholas made landfall, according to forecasters.

That was when more than 60 inches (152 centimetres) of rain dumped in southeast Texas over a four-day period in 2017 during Hurricane Harvey, which caused mass flooding and 68 deaths in Texas.

In Houston on Tuesday, six inches of rain was brought by Nicholas, which was less severe than in 2017 and that seen on the Texas Gulf Coast, where dozens of homes are still submerged. In total, 200,000 are without power.

Flooding after storm Nicholas, as seen by drone camera
Flooding after storm Nicholas, as seen by drone camera (TheWeatherChannel)

Another video showed what appeared to be a shark flying through the air of Port O’Connor, Texas, but was actually a fibreglass figure of a creature called “Bruce” that had broken free in winds. The town was among those first hit by Nicholas.

Heavy rains are forecast for southwest Louisiana and much of Texas, which could go on for days, according to forecasters, as Nicholas stalls.

According to the National Hurricane Centre, it is moving east-northeast slowly, at 6 mph (9 kph), and had wind speeds of 35 mph (55 kph) late on Tuesday.

Footage showed houses with roofs blown off and flooding after storm Nicholas
Footage showed houses with roofs blown off and flooding after storm Nicholas (TheWeatherChannel)

Inches of rain are forecast for areas already saturated by Hurricane Ida in recent weeks, which is likely to cause further flooding and damage for communities in Louisiana and Texas.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

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