Hanna expected to hit southern Texas coast as a hurricane

From the Associated Press

MIAMI (AP) — Tropical Storm Hanna is expected to hit the southern Texas coast as a hurricane on Saturday afternoon or early evening, forecasters said, all while another tropical storm approached the Caribbean.

Hanna was centered about 140 miles (225 kilometers) east-southeast of Corpus Christi, Texas, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said early Saturday. The storm had maximum sustained winds around 65 mph (100 kph) and was moving west at 8 mph (13 kph).

A hurricane warning is in effect for Port Mansfield to Mesquite Bay, a span that includes Corpus Christi. A tropical storm warning is in effect from Barra el Mezquital, Mexico, to Port Mansfield, Texas, and from Mesquite Bay to High Island, Texas.

A storm surge warning is in effect for Baffin Bay to Sargent. Storm surge up to 5 feet (1.5 meters) was forecast for that area. People were advised to protect life and property from high water.

Forecasters said Hanna could bring 5 to 10 inches (13 to 25 centimeters) of rain through Sunday night — with isolated totals of 15 inches (38 centimeters) — in addition to coastal swells that could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.

Hanna broke the record as the earliest eighth Atlantic named storm, according to Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach. The previous record was Harvey on Aug. 3, 2005, Klotzbach tweeted.

Tropical Storm Gonzalo was also the earliest Atlantic named storm for its place in the alphabet. The previous record was held by Tropical Storm Gert, which formed on July 24, 2005. So far this year, Cristobal, Danielle, Edouard and Fay also set records for being the earliest named Atlantic storm for their alphabetic order.

Gonzalo was moving west at 17 mph (30 kph) while its maximum sustained winds held at 40 mph (65 kph), according to the National Hurricane Center’s update early Saturday. It was centered about 240 miles (390 kilometers) east of Trinidad.

Officials said that those in the Windward Islands should monitor the storm as it is expected to approach the islands Saturday afternoon or evening. The storm is expected to weaken as it moves into the Caribbean Sea.

A tropical storm warning has been issued for St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Tobago and Grenada and its dependencies. Forecasters said Gonzalo could bring 1 to 3 inches (3 to 8 centimeters) of rain, with isolated totals of 5 inches (13 centimeters).