Tropical storm Bill is weakening as it comes closer towards the Texas coast. Authorities have issued tropical storm warnings in towns from Port Aransas to San Luis Pass, Texas.
On Tuesday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) tracked the storm at 4:00 CDT to 25 miles west of Port O’Connor, Texas, and 90 miles west-southwest of Freeport, Texas. The National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida, measured tropical storm Bill moving north-northwest at nine miles per hour, with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph.
Within the next 48 hours, tropical storm Bill is expected to move north, weakening as it moves over land. The storm is forecast to become a tropical depression by Wednesday morning.
Winds upwards of 50 mph extend 150 miles from the center of the storm. One hour ago, a wind gust of 41 mph was measured near Galveston, Texas. Multiple reports from offshore oil rigs state sustained tropical storm-force winds.
Bill is expected produce heavy rainfall with accumulations from four to eight inches over most of eastern Texas and eastern Oklahoma. Isolated rainfall maximums may reach 12 inches in some areas.
Reports of high water levels have been documented near Port Lavaca, Texas. According to locals, the river is currently 3.5 feet above normal. Tornadoes are also possible over areas of southeast and east-central Texas and Louisiana through Wednesday morning.
By Alex Lemieux
NOAA: Tropical Storm BILL Public Advisory
Photo Courtesy of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License