CARRYING flash flood warnings to Texas on Monday evening, Tropical Storm Beta shaped up to tie the record as the ninth storm to hit the continental US in a year.
The record was set more than a century ago, in 1916, according to Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach.
Beta’s winds were weakening as it got closer to making landfall and it was not expected to strengthen into a hurricane[/caption]
A boy rides his bike down South Magnolia Street in Rockport, Texas, as Tropical Storm Beta approaches[/caption]
While Beta did not appear on track to become a hurricane, it threatened to dump large amounts of rainfall on the region that has taken a pounding this season.
Beta was not expected to bring as much rain as a hurricane, but exactly how much was difficult to determine.
The biggest unknown around Tropical Storm Beta was how much rainfall it would bring[/caption]
Water runs along Highway 27 in Cameron, Louisiana, as Tropical Storm Beta moves closer to shore[/caption]
Predictions dropped on Monday from 20 inches to 15 inches in some regions, while the forecast was 4 to 6 inches for coastal counties in Texas and 2 to 4 inches for inland areas, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Dan Reilly in the Houston-Galveston office.
Meanwhile, Beta’s winds reached 25 miles per hour and it moved northwest at 5 miles per hour around 7pm.
Forecasters went into the Greek alphabet to name the storm because they ran out of traditional names, which has only happened one other time since the 1950s.
A satellite image taken Sept. 19, 2020, shows Tropical Storm Beta in the Gulf of Mexico[/caption]
A man rides his bicycle through a street flooded by Tropical Storm Beta as he makes his way home from a store[/caption]
Beta is projected to head northeast after making landfall, and linger in southeastern Texas on Tuesday and Wednesday.
By the middle of the week, Beta could reach Louisiana.
Flash flood watches could reach as far inland as Arkansas and Mississippi.
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A storm surge warning is in effect in various bays in Texas, from Port Aransas to Sabine Pass.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for 29 counties on Monday, and Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has declared a state of emergency.
Beta is the 23rd storm of this busier than normal hurricane season.