Hurricane Harvey has been upgraded to a Category 3 as it barrels towards the Texas coast.
With the storm expected to make landfall late Friday evening, residents in the Lone Star state are preparing for wind speeds topping 120 mph and potentially catastrophic flooding.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which tracks ocean trends and atmospheric conditions, tweeted an image of the hurricane early Friday afternoon.
— NOAA Satellites (@NOAASatellites) August 25, 2017
Texas residents stocked their shelves and prepared for major flooding after being warned that the storm is likely to hold over the state through the weekend, which could exacerbate the flooding to record levels.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner warned residents that the storm is going to last for days, and that people need to plan accordingly.
“People need to know, this is not a one, two-day event and done. Even though it may seem like it will get better, this is a four or five-day event starting tomorrow evening going through Monday or Tuesday,” Sylvester told CNN.
President Donald Trump was photographed reviewing the storm’s progress inside the Oval Office Friday afternoon. The White House said the president will be closely monitoring developments.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 25, 2017
The president was briefed Friday by acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke and Brock Long, who will face his first major test as the new administrator at the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
More than 2 feet of rain are expected to start pounding the coast Friday afternoon as wind speeds enter triple digits. In addition to a storm surge warning for much of the state, tornados could pop up on the storm’s eastern edge.
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