Tropical Storm Beta nears Texas coast; storms also headed for Florida Keys, Canada

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ORLANDO, Fla. — The National Hurricane Center remains attentive to several storm systems in the Atlantic including still-large Hurricane Teddy, a new tropical system with odds of development over South Florida and Tropical Storm Beta migrating toward Texas.

First, Hurricane Teddy weakened to a Category 1 storm but still has powerful maximum sustained winds of 90 mph and is moving northeast of Bermuda accelerating at 26 mph, the NHC said in its 8 p.m. update.

Bermuda is no longer under tropical storm threat as Teddy picks up speed moving away from the island but Canada’s southeastern areas continue to be under numerous warnings, based on the latest advisory report for Monday night.

Prince Edward Island is the latest Canadian province under a tropical storm watch, alongside the Magdalen Islands and Port aux Basques to Francois Newfoundland. A tropical storm warning remains in effect for the South coast of Nova Scotia from Digby to Meat Cove.

“Teddy should turn to the north-northeast and move over eastern Nova Scotia on Wednesday then over the Gulf of St. Lawrence late Wednesday into Thursday,” NHC forecasters said.

Teddy has a giant wave field, which is expected to produce life-threatening rip currents along western Atlantic beaches during the next few days. Large swells are forecast to impact the Lesser Antilles, the Greater Antilles, the Bahamas, the east coast of the United States, and Atlantic Canada.

Although Teddy has lost some of its defined structure as a result of passing through cold waters upwelled by Hurricane Paulette, the storm is expected to gain some strength by Wednesday night.

After that, a front is forecast to interact with Teddy forcing it to become post-tropical by the end of the week. The storm front will likely cause Teddy to grow even larger. Teddy, which earlier in the week had 140 mph winds and was the season’s second major hurricane, still has hurricane-force winds extending outward up to 80 miles from its center and tropical-storm-force winds extending up to 275 miles.

Next, slow-moving Tropical Storm Beta remains a small storm but brings heavy rain over the central Texas coast area, according to the 8 p.m. update.

“A decrease in forward speed and a sharp turn to the north and northeast are expected on Tuesday,” NHC forecasters said in its latest advisory. “On the forecast track, the center of Beta will continue to move toward the central coast of Texas and will likely move inland overnight.”

If Beta moves inland, that will make nine named storms to make landfall in the United States — the 2020 total ties the record with 1916 season for most landfalls in the country at this point of the year, said Colorado State University meteorologist Phil Klotzbach.

Forecasters predict Beta will likely produce flash, urban and minor river flooding in Texas and Louisiana.

Beta’s maximum sustained winds are near 45 mph, but dipped its forward speed to 5 mph toward the northwest. The storm is about 20 miles southeast of Port O’Connor, Texas and about 25 miles south-southeast of Matagorda.

Beta’s tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles from its center. Beta, while a small and slow storm, is expected to bring a large amount of rain onto communities along Interstate 10, said NHC director Ken Graham.

Heavy rain is expected to affect a large area of the Texas and Louisiana coast of about 4 to 6 inches as Beta moves so slowly makes its way northeast. It is expected to move inland and affect a large area of Arkansas bringing 2 to 4 inches of rain, Graham.

Life-threatening storm surge is also likely in Texas and Louisiana during high tide from Monday to Tuesday.

There is a moderate risk of flash flooding along the central and upper Texas coastline.

Beta is forecast to make landfall Monday night. After, Beta will begin losing strength but is expected to retain its structure throughout the week at least until Friday when it is forecast to dissipate.

Beta’s Lone Star arrival has issued several storm warnings including a storm surge warning for Port Aransas, Texas to Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge, Louisiana.

A tropical storm warning is also in effect from Port Aransas, Texas to Morgan City, Louisiana and a tropical storm watch was issued from Baffin Bay to Port Aransas, Texas.

A tornado threat is also possible Monday night near the middle to upper Texas coast or the southwestern Louisiana coast.

The NHC is also monitoring two systems with odds of becoming the next tropical depression or tropical storm including a weak frontal system associated with an area of showers and thunderstorms hanging over the Florida Keys.

At 8 p.m. Monday, the disturbance is forecast to continue moving toward central and western Cuba, and then move back toward Florida Thursday through Saturday. The environment is ideal for tropical development.

“Regardless of development, locally heavy rainfall is possible across the Florida Keys tonight,” NHC forecasters said in its latest advisory.

The disturbance has a 10% chance of developing over the next five days, and a near zero% chance of formation over the next two days.

Post-tropical cyclone Paulette is the second system the NHC is monitoring, as showers and thunderstorms associated with the disturbance are showing some signs of organization about 250 miles south of the easternmost Azores.

Forecasters detected a slight increase in organization that could result in the formation of a subtropical or tropical cyclone by tonight or Tuesday. The system is moving eastward at 10 to 15 mph, and has a high 80% chance of developing over the next two to five days.

The hurricane season officially runs from June 1-Nov. 30, but 2020 saw two storms form before June 1, and still has more than 10 weeks to go.


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