The south Texas border and northeast Mexico are preparing for a night of heavy wind and rains as Hurricane Hanna makes landfall.
The weather system, which was still classified as a tropical storm Saturday morning, gathered strength to become a Category 1 hurricane by the afternoon with sustained winds of 90 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
The National Hurricane Center said Hanna, the first of the 2020 hurricane season, will cross the south Texas border overnight and enter northeastern Mexico on Sunday.
Storm surge along the coast could cause hazardous conditions for ships and truck traffic in the area overnight.
Hanna is expected to produce 6 to 12 inches of rain, with some isolated areas seeing up to 18 inches, through Monday in south Texas and the Mexican states of Coahuila, Nuevo Leon and northern Tamaulipas.
“This rain will produce life-threatening flash flooding, rapid rises on small streams and isolated to moderate river flooding” in the eastern Rio Valley River area, the National Hurricane Center warned.
Portions of the upper Texas and Louisiana coasts could see between 3 and 5 inches of rain from the storm.
FreightWaves reported on Friday that the region’s ports, such as Houston and Corpus Christi, as well as the cross-border trade community, were monitoring the storm closely.
“Crews have secured port facilities/buildings and continue to prioritize emergency and storm-related work orders. All hurricane preparation work has been completed,” the Port of Corpus Christi said in a statement on Friday.
As of midafternoon Saturday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said its land border operations at Brownsville, Del Rio, Eagle Pass, Laredo, Pharr, Rio Grande, Progreso and Roma were open to traffic between the U.S. and Mexico.