U.S. State of Texas is facing a serious challenge which appears to be the country’s major disaster in 12 years as Hurricane Harvey approaches its coastline.
Texas State Governor Greg Abbott, described the hurricane as a “very major disaster” for the southern U.S. state, while calling for more federal aid to cope with the storm.
According to BBC, the disaster is now a category four storm as it powers across the Gulf of Mexico into Texas’ central coast.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said storm surges may bring life-threatening floods in and around Houston.
At 18:00 (23:00 GMT), the storm was 45 miles (70 km) east of Corpus Christi, with maximum sustained winds of 130mph (215 km/h), the NHC said.
The storm may bring 40in (102cm) of rain and 12ft (3.5m) storm surges, say forecasters.
Mr Abbott said Harvey was now “turning into a very complex and dangerous hurricane” and that it is likely to strike at the heart of Texas’s oil refining industry, with Corpus Christi, a port city of 320,000 people, in the path of the storm.
In a letter to President Donald Trump requesting federal aid, Mr Abbott said: “The storm surge, coupled with the deluge of rain, could easily lead to billions of dollars of property damage and almost certainly loss of life.”
The White House said Mr Trump is likely to visit Texas early next week.