MIAMI — Tropical Storm Nicholas is set to dump a torrential amount of rain on the Texas coast in the next two days.
The Houston office of the National Weather Service tweeted that 10 to 20 inches of rain could be possible in some spots, and large swaths of Texas and southwest Louisiana could see 5 to 10 inches. Storm surge could be as high as three to five feet.
Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center said the slow-moving storm was drifting “erratically” off the Texas coast Monday morning. As of the 8 a.m. update, Nicholas was crawling along at 5 mph but drifting west, closer to land.
It had 40 mph maximum sustained winds, and it’s projected to strengthen up to 70 mph before landfall near San Antonio Bay, north of Corpus Christi. That region is under a hurricane watch due to the possibility that the Gulf of Mexico’s super warm waters and low shear could power Nicholas into a hurricane just before landfall.
Nicholas was about 40 miles south-southeast of the Rio Grande and about 210 miles south of Port O’Connor in Texas.
The hurricane center is also tracking two disturbances that could develop into tropical depressions this week.
The first and most likely candidate is a tropical wave that rolled off Africa’s west coast. It’s charging west at 10 to 15 mph and forecasters said a tropical depression is likely to form later this week. They gave it a 30% chance of formation in the next two days and 80% within the next five.
The other disturbance, an area of low pressure expected to form midweek a couple hundred miles north of the central Bahamas, is expected to gradually strengthen. Forecasters said it could form into a tropical depression later this week. They gave it no chance of developing in the next two days but a 50% shot at becoming a tropical depression within the week.
The next two names on the list are Odette and Peter.