Record-Breaking Hurricane Beryl Left Millions without Power in Texas

“Latest Beryl Devastation was similar to the Solar Eclipse but with a line of Thunderstorms”

Hurricane Beryl will be talked about for a long time by many for memorable tropical systems. Over 200 tornado warnings were issued from July 8th to 10th, the most since Hurricane Ivan in 2004! The strongest tornado so far occurred in the west KY/southern IN risk zone, with an EF3 rated tornado so far. All of all the days, that area probably underperformed the most. The final day in New York State was the MOST tornado warnings ever issued in a single day in the NWS history of NY. NWS Buffalo issued their most tornado warnings ever in a single day, at 18.

National Weather Service in Shreveport issued 67 tornado warnings out of one office in one day.

NWS Shreveport issued 67 tornado warnings themselves, their most ever in a single day too. Again, a reminder the next time you watch a TV forecast or see online, yes, big hurricane and systems should be watched and followed well inland for this exact reason. Not every will be this widespread, but many are. Also, a reminder of the fact that tornadoes occur even WELL inland on the RIGHT side of the system. Simply put, that is where the shear and instability is highest. Texas to New Hampshire got in on the tornado warning action from Hurricane Beryl’s remnants. The remnants now will become fully non-post tropical and the energy that does still remain will get catapulted across the Atlantic and help fuel rains and wind in the United Kingdom early next week!

Beryl Went from Tropical Storm to Category 5 to Category 1 in Houston then into a tornado producing machine

Tropical Storm Beryl, after weakening over the Yucatan Peninsula, is showing signs of reorganization. Although winds are currently at 60 mph, satellite imagery reveals a burst of convection, indicating potential restrengthening. Beryl’s track has shifted north, now targeting the Texas coastline near Corpus Christi. Houston, unfortunately, is in the storm’s path and can expect heavy rainfall. One of the factors aiding Beryl’s potential intensification is the unusually warm ocean temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico, which are currently between 29°C and 30°C. These warm waters act as fuel for hurricanes, allowing them to strengthen quickly.

Hurricane Beryl Sets Records

This year’s hurricane season was predicted to be active, but Beryl is already breaking records. Forecasters predict it could intensify into a Category 2 hurricane before making landfall on Monday. Warm sea surface temperatures and favorable upper-level winds could fuel rapid intensification, though dry air might hinder explosive development.

Tropical Atlantic Sea Surface Temperatures at historic highs for 2024.

Beryl’s short life has already been historic, setting multiple records. It’s the easternmost-forming June hurricane, the first and only Category 4 hurricane in June, and the earliest-forming Category 5 hurricane on record. It also boasts the largest rapid intensification period in June and is among the earliest major hurricanes in a calendar year. Beryl’s intensity and track through the Caribbean have also broken records, making it the strongest hurricane to pass through the Windward Islands and the strongest in the eastern Caribbean since 2017.

“Hot tub” warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico

Rainfall Expectations and Flood Threat

Significant rainfall is expected across the Southeast, and Texas will welcome the much-needed precipitation. However, torrential rains of up to a foot or more are possible in central Texas, with a corridor of 8-12 inches likely. Unfortunately, the heaviest rain may miss drought-stricken areas and impact already wet soils, increasing the flood risk. Of particular concern is Lake Livingston Dam, which is already under watch due to recent heavy rains.

Wind, Tornado, and Riptide Risks

High winds are the primary concern, especially along the coast. However, Beryl’s size and angle of approach may mitigate the strongest winds. Tornadoes are also a risk, particularly to the right of the storm’s path. Additionally, high surf and rip currents are expected along the western U.S. Gulf Coast.

Storm Surge Threat

Expected Cone of Hurricane Beryl impacting the Texas coast.

Due to Beryl’s size and relatively short timeframe before landfall, a massive storm surge is not expected. The National Hurricane Center predicts a peak surge of 3-5 feet, causing moderate coastal flooding and erosion. While significant, this surge will not be as devastating as past hurricanes like Ike in 2008.

Watches and Warnings

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for Matagorda County, and a Tropical Storm Warning covers SE Harris, S. Liberty, Galveston, Brazoria, Colorado, and Wharton counties.

Disaster Declaration and Evacuations

Over 120 Texas counties, including major population centers, are under a disaster declaration. A voluntary evacuation has been issued for coastal Matagorda County residents.

Stay Prepared

Texas residents should stay informed and prepare for a potential Category 2 hurricane landfall. Follow official guidance and heed evacuation orders if issued.

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