Updated Sep 23, 2020 - Science

Texas and Louisiana face fresh flood threat from storm Beta

People walk on the beach at Galveston Island as tropical storm Beta will make landfall near Matagorda Bay on September 21, 2020 in Galveston, Texas.
Beta's heavy rains lash the beach at Texas' Galveston Island on Monday. Photo: Zeng Jingning/China News Service via Getty Images

Flash flood watches were in effect across southeast Texas and southern Louisiana as Post-Tropical Cyclone Beta continued to unleash heavy rains overnight.

Of note: Up to 14 inches of rain fell in Houston, Texas, late Tuesday as the storm continued to move slowly move east, per the National Hurricane Center.

What they're saying: Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said in a statement Tuesday that people should remain vigilant as Beta "poses serious flood risks to communities."

  • "Texans who live in areas at risk for flooding should not travel if possible, avoid crossing flooded roadways, and continue to heed the guidance of local officials as this storm makes its way through the Lone Star State," he said.

What to expect: "Rainfall totals of 2 to 5 inches are expected east into the Lower Mississippi Valley, portions of the Tennessee Valley, and the southern Appalachians through the end of the week," the NHC said.

The big picture: Beta made landfall in southeastern Texas as a tropical storm on Monday, becoming the ninth named storm to hit the U.S. mainland this year. It was downgraded Tuesday.

  • Abbott made a disaster declaration and Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) declared a state of emergency Monday ahead of Beta's arrival.
  • It's the 23rd named storm this hurricane season and threatens a coastal region already ravaged by former hurricanes Laura and Sally in recent weeks.
  • The 61st Street Fishing Pier in Galveston, Texas, broke off in high waves as the storm slowly approached over the weekend, the NWS noted.
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