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Tropical Storm Don Threatens Texas, But It Might Be A Good Thing

Enhanced satellite view of Don.
Enhanced satellite view of Don.

According the latest projections from National Hurricane Center, Tropical Storm Don is expected to make landfall along the South Texas coast Friday night into Saturday.

The Hurricane Center has issued tropical storm warnings for a good deal of the Texas coast, stretching from San Luis Pass near Galveston to Port Mansfield near Padre Island.

Usually tropical weather this time of year is bad news, but this time it might be good. First, as the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang reports, the chances of Don strengthing are slim and second that part of Texas desperately needs the rain:

The National Hurricane Center projects 3 to 5 inches of rainfall from the central Texas coast westward to south central Texas with isolated amounts to 7 inches. As the latest shows 75 percent of Texas in exceptional drought, this is welcome news. However, Texas needs 15 inches of rain to erase drought conditions.

Given the exceedingly dry soils in place, and the relatively fast storm motion, the risk for widespread flooding appears to be low but isolated flooding could occur.

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Eyder Peralta
Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.