Rain started to fall along the Gulf Coast as Hurricane Dolly – upgraded in force from a tropical storm – closed in on towns straddling the Texas-Mexico border.
The Category 1 hurricane was expected to strengthen slightly before making landfall Wednesday and bringing with it up to 15 inches of rain.
Dolly was upgraded from a tropical storm Tuesday afternoon, and sustained winds later reached about 80 mph. At 2 a.m. EDT Wednesday, the storm’s center was about 85 miles east-southeast of Brownsville, moving northwest at about 9 mph.A hurricane warning was in effect for the coast of Texas from Brownsville to Corpus Christi and in Mexico from Rio San Fernando northward.
Cities and counties in the heavily populated Rio Grande Valley were preparing Tuesday night as officials feared heavy rains could cause massive flooding and levee breaks.Texas officials urged residents to move away from the Rio Grande levees because if Dolly continues to follow the same path as 1967′s Hurricane Beulah, “the levees are not going to hold that much water,” said Cameron County Emergency Management Coordinator Johnny Cavazos.
We don’t need another disaster like they had in New Orleans, and effect on the price of gas can be devastating if the refineries take a direct hit and make them inoperable.