Tropical Storm Beta UPDATE: 9/19/20 6:45pm

Tropical Storm Beta has tightened up projections on path and rainfall. As of now, we are seeing a path into Matagorda County and moving Northeast along the coast of Texas and into Louisiana. Rains in the Fort Bend County area are to begin Sunday morning and progress throughout the week dropping a projected 4-6” over 5 days into Thursday 9/24. LMS is making final preparations in all districts per LID EAPs and will patrol each district throughout the week to insure proper drainage.

The Brazos River is currently still below Action Stage, sitting at 14ft which allows all districts to be able to drain water via gravity flow. At this time, predictions are showing the rainfall along the Brazos River watershed to be minimal, so it is possible we will remain on gravity flow for the duration of this Tropical Storm. Please note, as always, during high intensity rains you can expect high water throughout the district and severe street flooding until areas are able to drain.

Please refer to the Fort Bend County Homeland Security and Emergency Management website for accurate information throughout the week.

Tropical Depression No. 22

There remains significant uncertainty the track for Tropical Depression No. 22. We should anticipate more changes in its forecast, but currently the Greater Houston area is within the Cone of Uncertainty. The forecast shows TD 22 moving in a NW direction over the western Gulf of Mexico as it strengthens into a Tropical Storm (Wilfred) today or possibly tomorrow morning. By Saturday, conditions could push TD 22 in a western direction toward the south Texas coast potentially reaching Hurricane Strength as it stalls off the south Texas Coast. This storm due to its movement could bring some Tropical Storm Force Winds t the central and south Texas coastal areas, but water (storm surge and rain) is the biggest threat to this system. These impacts could start as early as Sunday night into Monday morning as squalls begin to approach the coast. The heaviest amounts of rain are currently along and off the coast with 10 to 12 inches and widespread amounts in the 15 to 20 inches over the Gulf of Mexico. The current 7-Day Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF) has the western portions of our Region, including Fort Bend, Harris, and Waller Counties, possibly receiving between 2 to 6 inches over the next 7 days. The majority of this rainfall could occur Sunday evening into Thursday morning. Based on the uncertainty, these rainfall amounts will likely change.

As mentioned, there is currently low confidence in the overall track and development of TD 22 and changes in this forecast are possible. The District’s Engineer and Operator are continuing to monitor the conditions. The District’s facilities are operational and ready if needed.

We encourage everyone to stay informed by visiting your favorite local weather source, including the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and West Gulf River Forecast Center. If you have not ready done so, please remember to sign up for Emergency Updates from Fort Bend County.

 

Hurricane Laura Update

Overnight Hurricane Laura continued to strengthen and is now a Category 3 Hurricane. The latest forecast shows Laura making landfall as a Category 3 or 4 Hurricane early Thursday morning somewhere between Port Arthur and Lake Charles. Regardless of the exact landfall location, major damage and life-threatening conditions remain along the Texas/Louisiana Border. Those in that region are encouraged to complete all preparations by 6 PM this evening. For those not within evacuation zones, agencies are encouraging everyone to avoid driving, especially on Hurricane Evacuation Routes, to keep routes clear for those under mandatory evacuations.

Overall Fort Bend County will receive less severe weather than those along the Texas/Louisiana Border. Similar to yesterday’s forecast, Fort Bend County along with many areas on the west of downtown Houston have a 20 to 50% chance of experiencing Tropical Storm Force Winds (1-Minute Average ≥ 39 MPH). Although less damaging than Hurricane Force Winds, TS Winds are still capable of causing downed trees and tree limbs as well as displacing debris and other loose objections. Everyone is encouraged to secure any loose items around structures and remain indoors as the storm passes. Once the storm passes, whether you are clearing debris from your own home or assisting others, remember to proceed with caution. Use proper safety measures when clearing limbs and downed trees and watch for hidden damage such as downed powerlines.

The most significant rainfall continues to remain to our east. The latest Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF) continues to show Fort Bend County receiving around 1 inch of rain with some areas possible receiving isolated amounts closer to 2 inches. According to the NWS Weather Prediction Center (WPC), eastern portions of Fort Bend County has a marginal risk (5%) of receiving excessive rainfall amounts causing flash flooding conditions.

As mentioned, the most severe weather should remain well east of Fort Bend County; however, the District along with our District Engineer and Operator are continuing to monitor the situation and are ready to respond as needed. We encourage everyone to stay informed by visiting your favorite local weather source, including the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and West Gulf River Forecast Center. If you have not ready down so, please remember to sign up for Emergency Updates from Fort Bend County.

Weekly Brazos River Outlook / Gulf Tropical Activity

The Brazos River in Richmond is currently at Gage Elevation 8.84. Based on the 7-day extended forecast, no flooding along the Brazos River through Fort Bend County is anticipated.

This Week

This week will all depend on the final tracks and development of TS Marco and TS Laura. TS Marco is currently located in the northern Gulf of Mexico, southeast of the Louisiana/Mississippi Border. TS Marco has weakened and is expected to remain a Tropical Storm as it moves in a west to northwestern direction along the Louisiana coastline over the next 24 to 48 hours. By Late Tuesday into early Wednesday, TS Marco should dissipate into a Depression as it continues to move along the Texas coastline toward Galveston Bay. The more significant threat to SE Texas is TS Laura. Currently TS Laura is moving in a northwest direction across Cuba and should enter the Gulf of Mexico late tonight into early tomorrow morning. Over the past 24 hours, Laura’s path has continued to move west, closer to the Texas/Louisiana Border. The confidence in the overall track is increasing but additional shifts are still possible. Based on the forecasts and models, Laura could make landfill as a Category 2 Hurricane as far west as Galveston Bay (Texas) to as far east as Vermillion Bay (Louisiana). Impacts to the region will all depend on the final development and tracks of both storms.

This week our high temperatures will be in the low to mid- 90s with our low temperatures in the upper 70s to ow 80s. Rainfall amounts will vary depending on the development and tracks of TS Marco and TS Laura. Based on the current 7-Day Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF), the lower Brazos River Watershed, including Fort Bend County, could see less than a 1 inch of rainfall over the next 7 days. Similar to previous weeks and with the Tropical Storm activity, areas across the watershed could see less or slightly higher amounts. The most significant rainfall is located east of the Watershed.

The District along with our District Engineer and Operator are continuing to monitor the conditions throughout the week. We encourage everyone to stay informed by visiting your favorite local weather source, including the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and West Gulf River Forecast Center. If you have not ready down so, please remember to sign up for Emergency Updates from Fort Bend County.

Reservoir Status

Tropical Depression 14 – 08/20 11 AM Update

The National Hurricane Center has started issuing Advisories on Tropical Depression No. 14, which is currently located east of Honduras in the Caribbean Sea. The NHC anticipates TD 14 continuing to strengthen over the northwestern Caribbean Sea potentially becoming a Tropical Storm later today. The latest forecast shows it moving across the Yucatan Peninsula over the weekend and entering the southern Gulf of Mexico on Sunday, potentially moving toward the Texas Coast early to middle of next week. It is too early to know the exact location of landfall and the impacts / strength of this system, but everyone along the Texas Coast are encouraged to closely monitor the development of this system and review local Hurricane Preparedness Plans.

The District along with our District Engineer and Operator are continuing to monitor the conditions throughout the week and over the Weekend. We encourage everyone to stay informed by visiting your favorite local weather source, including the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and West Gulf River Forecast Center. If you have not already done so, please remember to sign up for Emergency Updates from Fort Bend County.

Update on Tropical Storm Hanna and Tropical Storm Gonzalo

Last night TD No. 8 was upgraded to Tropical Storm Hanna with Maximum sustained winds of 40 mph. Development could continue with Hanna potentially reaching maximum sustained winds around 65 mph before making landfill south of Corpus Christi Saturday afternoon.

With the ultimate track shifting south, our biggest threat in the Greater Houston area will be rainfall that occurs from outer bands as Hanna moves toward the Coast. Today through Sunday, Hanna could produce periods of heavy rains with much of our Region seeing widespread amounts between 1 to 3 inches with isolated amounts of 8+ inches. Based on information from the NWS, these higher amounts should remain to our southwest; however, we will continue to monitor the conditions has the impacts could shift as Hanna approaches and moves onshore. As with any heavy rainfall in the Houston area, the Region could see some street ponding and rises in some of our creek and streams; however, the current forecasts do not call for significant, widespread street or stream flooding.

Tropical Storm Gonzalo

The majority of everyone’s focus continues to be TS Hanna, but we are all still watching TS Gonzalo that is continuing to move west toward the Caribbean. The NHC shows TS Gonzalo possibly becoming a Category 1 Hurricane as it approaches the Lesser Antilles; however, their forecast continues to show TS Gonzalo losing strength and dissipating as it moves south of the Dominican Republic.

Beyond Gonzalo

There is an additional disturbance off the Coast of Guinea near the Cabo Verde Islands. Currently, the NHC gives this system a 30% chance of moving across the Atlantic and becoming a Tropical System. It is still too early to tell how this system might develop and what impacts it might have on the United States, but we are continuing to watch this system in addition to Hanna and Gonzalo.

The District along with our District Engineer and Operator are continuing to monitor the conditions and changes in the forecast and are prepared to mobilize as needed. We encourage everyone to stay informed by visiting your favorite local weather source, including the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and West Gulf River Forecast Center. If you have not ready down so, please remember to sign up for Emergency Updates from Fort Bend County.

Key Messages for Tropical Depression Eight and Tropical Storm Gonzalo

The National Hurricane Center has started publishing advisories on Tropical Depression No. 8. Based on the latest advisory, the NHC continues to show possible landfall near Matagorda Bay as a Tropical Storm. Tropical Storm Watches have been issued for much of the Texas Coast.

There has not been a significant change in the overall forecast since earlier today. Heavy rains are possible but will be dependent upon the final development and landfall. The current 7-Day Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF) is showing widespread rainfall amounts between 2 to 4 inches across the Region, but we could see areas with isolated higher amounts.

In addition to TD No. 8, the NHC is continuing to monitor TS Gonzalo. It is still too early to determine the impacts to the Texas Coast, but the NHC expects Gonzalo to become a Hurricane on Thursday but should lose some strength returning to a Tropical Storm on Saturday as it move through the Lesser Antilles and continues south of the Dominican Republic.

LJA will continue to monitor the conditions and changes in the forecast, but we encourage everyone to stay informed by visiting your favorite local weather source, including the National Weather Service, the National Hurricane Center, and West Gulf River Forecast Center. If you have not ready down so, please remember to sign up for Emergency Updates from Fort Bend County and/or Harris County.

What You Should Know About Hurricanes

Cristobal Update – June 4

NWS Tropical Depression Cristobal Briefing – Thursday, June 4, 2020 (PDF)

We are continuing to monitor the development of now Tropical Depression Cristobal. Currently, Cristobal continues to be inland over the Mexico/Guatemala border moving in the easterly direction. The National Hurricane Center 10:00 AM forecast shows TD Cristobal starting to move in a more northerly direction later today. As it approaches the open waters of the Gulf, the forecast shows TD Cristobal regaining Tropical Storm strength by Saturday. There continues to be some uncertainty in the overall path and impacts of Cristobal, but over the past 24 hours, the National Hurricane Center has focused their forecasts showing Cristobal reaching the Louisiana Coastline Sunday night into Monday Morning. Although we cannot specifically rule out impacts to Southeast Texas, the current path could mean minimal impacts to Fort Bend County and the Brazos River Watershed. The most severe weather, including heavy rain, would be on the “wet” or east side of the storm’s center.

The NWS Quantitative Precipitation Forecast includes both rainfall associated with Cristobal as well as rainfall not directly associated with the storm. Based on the forecast, the most severe rainfall is located over portions of the Gulf Coast, east of Texas. Based on the 7-Day QPF, the lower Brazos River could see less than ½ inch over the next 7 days. These rainfall amounts could change based on the actual development and path of Cristobal.

Based on the amount of rainfall received on Wednesday, we did see the Brazos River in Richmond flatten out; however, as of this morning the Brazos River from Hempstead to Rosharon continues to fall. By the weekend, levels should be at or slightly below our historical average for this time of the year.

We will continue to monitor the development of this system and provide updates. We encourage everyone to continue to monitor the forecasts published by the National Hurricane Center and stay informed through the Houston/Galveston NWS Office, the West Gulf River Forecast Center, and the Fort Bend County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.

Tropical Wave Update – 10/15/2019 at 2:30 PM

The National Hurricane Center has increased the chance of the Tropical Disturbance over Central America to a 40% chance of development over the next 5 days. The good news is that the forecasts are continuing to show this system avoiding the Texas coastline and move through the western Gulf of Mexico in a clockwise rotation to the northeast. The system could bring additional moisture into our region, but this track keeps the heaviest rainfall to our east. Overall, the lower Brazos River Watershed, including Fort Bend County, could receive 1 to 2 inches over the next 7 days. We will continue to watch for changes in the forecast and provide updates as necessary.