July 19th, 2024

Beryl regains hurricane strength as it bears down on southern Texas

By The Associated Press on July 7, 2024.

Leo Cardin walks past a Confederate Artillery Battery display as he watches storm clouds roll in ahead of Beryl, Sunday, July 7, 2024, in Port Lavaca, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

MATAGORDA, Texas (AP) – Beryl strengthened and once again became a hurricane late Sunday as it heads toward southern Texas, where its outer bands lashed the coast with rain and intensifying winds as residents prepared for the powerful storm that has already cut a deadly path through parts of Mexico and the Caribbean.

The hurricane top sustained winds of 75 mph (120 kph), according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami. It was moving northwest at 10 mph (16 kph).

As the storm neared the coast, Texas officials warned Sunday it could cause power outages and flooding but also expressed worry that not enough residents and beach vacationers in Beryl’s path had heeded warnings to leave.

Beryl hit Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula on Friday as a Category 2 hurricane but weakened to a tropical storm as it moved over land. The U.S. National Hurricane Center had said Beryl was expected to regain hurricane strength after emerging into the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico on its way toward southern Texas, an area soaked by Tropical Storm Alberto just a couple of weeks ago.

Beryl previously spread destruction in Jamaica, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Barbados after becoming the earliest storm to develop into a Category 5 hurricane in the Atlantic. Three people have been reported dead in Grenada, three in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, three in Venezuela and two in Jamaica, officials said.

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