Hurricane Hanna batters southern Texas

Hurricane Hanna batters southern Texas
Hurricane Hanna is the first Hurricane of the season. Source: Getty Images
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Daily US Times: Hurricane Hanna has made landfall in southern Texas, with US officials warning of life-threatening strong winds, heavy rains, and storm surge.

Governor of the state Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for 32 counties, saying the coronavirus outbreak would complicate the work of the emergencies services.

Hanna made landfall on Padre Island on Saturday, and is now battering the area between Brownsville Corpus Christi.

With winds up to 145km/h (90mph), the storm was tearing roofs off homes.

Hanna was a Category One hurricane, the lowest level on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale.

Gov Abbott said: “Any hurricane is an enormous challenge.”

“This challenge is complicated and made even more severe, seeing that it is sweeping through an area that is the most challenged area in the state for Covid-19,” he added on Saturday.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) warned that a “life-threatening storm surge will continue along portions of the Texas coast from Port Mansfield to Sargent”.

The NHC urged local residents to follow advice given by the emergencies services.

The Houston Chronicle reports, the storm is expected to mostly skirt the Houston region.

The NHC said at 22:00 local time on Saturday (03:00 GMT Sunday), “maximum sustained winds were near 75mph.

It added that “rapid weakening is expected as Hanna moves farther inland” over Texas and into north-eastern Mexico on Sunday.

Separately, the NHC said, Hurricane Douglas – with maximum winds of up to 90mph – was approaching Hawaii in the Pacific, warning of damaging winds, dangerously high surf and flooding rainfall.

US President Donald Trump tweeted that the White House was closely monitoring the storms.

He said: “We continue to closely co-ordinate closely with both states.”

Hanna hits Texas as the state is struggling to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

More than 380,000 infection cases have so far been confirmed in Texas, with nearly 5,000 deaths.

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