Texas’ coast is among the first regions in the U.S. to bear the brunt of a storm season expected to be above average while also battling some of the more grisly impacts of COVID-19.
The south Texas coast— a region already struggling with a COVID-19 spike— was hit this weekend by torrential downpours and flash flooding from Hurricane Hanna, a Category 1 storm.
Early on Sunday, Hanna was downgraded to a tropical storm and its storm surge warning cancelled. But as communities assess the damage, normal emergency relief strategies must also take into consideration the threat of spreading the virus in shelters.
Today, the storm is expected to dump as much as 18 inches of rain.
One area in the path of the storm, Corpus Christi’s Nueces County, reported 175 new cases of the coronavirus and five deaths on Friday.
There are currently more than 440 people hospitalized in the area for COVID-19, according to the state health department.
A majority of the county’s COVID-19 deaths— all but 10 out of 129— happened in July, according to the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.