Tropical Storm Nicholas Drenches Gulf Coast
TEXAS—September 16, 2021—Nicholas made landfall early Tuesday in Texas as a Category 1 hurricane. Coming ashore with heavy rain and high winds, Nicholas weakened quickly to a tropical storm and then a depression by Tuesday night. More than a foot of rain fell in some areas with Galveston reporting nearly 14 inches, according to the Associated Press. About half a million homes and businesses lost power as the storm slowed to a crawl, threatening prolonged rain and flooding as it inched along the Gulf Coast.
The biggest threat from Nicholas was to Louisiana, which is still recovering from Hurricane Ida a few weeks ago. As Nicholas moved into the region, about 87,000 customers were still waiting for their power to be restored from Ida, according to ABC News. Efforts to restore power will likely be further set back by heavy rain and flooding. At least four to six inches of rain fell across the Louisiana coast this week with some areas seeing higher totals as the storm stalled.
Flash flood watches were in effect from Louisiana to Florida for most of the week. By Thursday, parts of Alabama and Mississippi saw as much as 11 inches of rain, according to ABC News. Meanwhile, forecasters are also tracking Tropical Storm Odette as it travels northeast, remaining off shore of the U.S. Eastern Seaboard. A second disturbance in the tropics has an 80% chance of becoming a tropical cyclone as it travels west-northwest toward the Caribbean islands.