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Gov. Abbott issues disaster declaration for 19 Texas counties ahead of Tropical Storm Nicholas

Tropical Storm Nicholas is expected to be a huge rainmaker for the Houston area and tropical-storm-force winds are likely.

TEXAS, USA — Gov. Greg Abbott has issued a disaster declaration for 19 counties in Southeast Texas ahead of Tropical Storm Nicholas.

RELATED: Live storm updates: Gov. Abbott issues disaster declaration for 17 Texas counties due to Tropical Storm Nicholas

Those counties are:

  • Aransas
  • Brazoria
  • Calhoun
  • Chambers
  • Galveston
  • Harris
  • Jackson
  • Jasper
  • Jefferson
  • Liberty
  • Matagorda
  • Montgomery
  • Newton
  • Nueces
  • Orange
  • Refugio
  • San Patricio
  • Victoria
  • Wharton

Abbott said more counties will be added as needs are identified. 

"Texans throughout the Gulf Coast should prepare now for the impact of Tropical Storm Nicholas, which is expected to bring severe rain and flooding to these communities," said Governor Abbott. "The State of Texas is working closely with officials on the ground to provide the resources and support needed to keep our communities safe, but it is up to all Texans in the path of this storm to take precautions, heed the guidance of officials, and remain vigilant as this severe weather moves through Texas." 

Abbott said the state has been preparing for Tropical Storm Nicholas. 

READ: Gov. Abbott prepares state to support local officials during Tropical Storm Nicholas response

He already ordered the Texas State Operations Center (SOC) to increase its readiness to Level II. He has also activated the use of several tactical vehicles and teams for high-water and ground rescue, as well as aircraft.

Nicholas is expected to bring heavy rain to many parts of Southeast Texas starting Monday night. Although rain is the biggest threat, we could see tropical-storm-force winds in the immediate Houston area Monday night and Tuesday.

With the track now taking the center of the storm over downtown Houston Tuesday, we could see a significant power outage threat from the storm.