Tuesday, Sept. 10, marked the peak of hurricane season www.nhc.noaa.gov/climo/images/peakofseason.gif. While we have not had a storm impact the coast of Texas in a significant way so far this hurricane season, many storms impacting Texas shores take place in September and October; therefore, it is important to stay vigilant and make sure you have a plan in case there is a storm. The Atlantic hurricane season will end on November 30.
Dr. Philippe Tissot, Associate Professor in the College of Science and Engineering and Associate Director of the Conrad Blucher Institute (CBI) at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, gave an interview warning the public “don’t let your guard down just yet.”
The last major hurricane to hit the Texas Coast was Hurricane Ike in September 2008. The category two hurricane produced 110 mph winds with storm surges of up to 14 feet in the Galveston and Port Arthur areas. The storm caused more than $19 billion in damages. Hurricane Rita in 2005 made landfall late September in Texas as a category 3 hurricane.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi manages 37 tide stations along the Texas coast, including the 31 stations of the Texas Coastal Ocean Observation Network (TCOON). Since 1989, the CBI has provided real-time meteorological information essential for predicting and measuring water levels all along the Texas coast.
The CBI also uses historical data to model the future impact of relative sea-level rise both from land subsidence, important particularly in the northern part of Texas, and global sea-level rise. In particular, low-lying coastlines will become increasingly vulnerable to the impact of small or distant storms leading to increasingly frequent inundations as the century progresses. Besides the impact of large but fortunately rare major hurricanes, it is also important to consider and model the impact of small but increasingly frequent inundation (flooding) events to build a resilient coastal community.