Hurricane Harvey continues to move - slowly - toward the Texas coast at 10 mph. The Category Three storm is hours away from landfall and is already pushing a storm surge across the beaches of Texas from Corpus Christi to Houston. Surface wind speeds are estimated at 120mph in the official forecast, but radar estimates show wind as strong as 140mph at 6,000 to 9,000 feet in altitude.
Keeping up with evacuation orders is important for Texans as many towns, cities and counties continue to realize the threat Harvey poses. TxDOT has a list of evacuation routes on it's website
Here is the latest from the National Hurricane Center: Some key points form the National Hurricane Center:
1. Harvey is expected to be a major hurricane when it makes landfall tonight, bringing life-threatening storm surge, rainfall, and wind hazards to portions of the Texas coast. Preparations should be rushed to completion in the warning areas as tropical-storm-force winds are arriving on the coast, and conditions will continue to deteriorate through the rest of today and tonight.
2. A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for much of the Texas coast. 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. For a depiction of areas at risk, see the Storm Surge Watch/Warning Graphic at hurricanes.gov. Due to the slow motion of Harvey and a prolonged period of onshore flow, water levels will remain elevated for several days.
3. Catastrophic and life-threatening flooding is expected across the middle and upper Texas coast from heavy rainfall of 15 to 25 inches, with isolated amounts as high as 35 inches, through Wednesday. Please refer to products from your local National Weather Service office and the NOAA Weather Prediction Center for more information on the flooding hazard.
4. The Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map is available on the NHC website. This product depicts a reasonable worst-case scenario - the amount of inundation that has a 10 percent chance of being exceeded at each individual location. This map best represents the flooding potential in those locations within the watch and warning areas.
WDAM First Alert Weather Chief Meteorologist Nick Lilja will have a detailed update posted on his blog this afternoon with model data, forecast extras and the science behind the forecast. You can find the latest Tropical Update video here.
The WDAM First Alert Weather App:
Take the same tools the WDAM First Alert Weather team uses with you anywhere you go. Download the WDAM First Alert Weather app today for real-time interactive radar, location-based severe weather alerts and a constantly updated forecast for wherever you are.
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If your home or community is damaged in the storms, contact your county's Emergency Management Agency here.