The storm ‘Nicholas’ has become a category one hurricane on Monday night as it approaches landfall in the state of Texas, according to the US National Hurricane Centre.
Nicholas was upgraded to a hurricane at about 23:00 local time and was about 30 kilometres southeast of Matagorda, Texas, and is expected to make landfall in a few hours, according to Bloomberg.
The hurricane, with winds of 120 kilometres per hour, could bring up to 46 centimetres of rain to Houston, one of Texas’ largest cities, and threatens coastal refineries and petrochemical facilities in the Gulf of Mexico.
In its advance, the hurricane has caused rain and flooding in parts of Louisiana, a state that was recently affected by the scourge of Hurricane Ida.
The governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards, has declared a state of emergency, which has subsequently been approved by the president of the United States, Joe Biden, according to the White House in a statement.
Biden has ordered federal assistance to supplement state and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from ‘Nicholas’, which has forced Texas Governor Greg Abbott to ask emergency responders to prepare for the hurricane.
Nicholas’ is the 14th Atlantic storm in 2021. Half of the storms so far have hit the US, and ‘Ida’ was the worst of the season, smashing into the Louisiana coast before devastating New York with rain and flooding that left more than 40 people dead.