Gulf of Mexico

North Texas first responders mobilize as Gov. Abbott issues disaster declaration; Alberto now a tropical depression

In Mexico, three deaths are linked to TS Alberto's rains

NBC Universal, Inc.

Tropical Storm Alberto rumbled ashore making landfall in Tampico, Mexico early Thursday morning. The first named storm of the hurricane season was downgraded to a tropical depression late Thursday morning. Texas began mobilizing Wednesday as South Texas and the coast received heavy rainfall and tropical force winds and coastal flooding.


Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for 51 counties, paving the way for local officials and emergency response to the impacts of Tropical Storm Alberto.

The U.S. National Weather Service said the main hazard for southern coastal Texas is flooding from excess rain.

As much as 5-10 inches of rain was expected in some areas along the Texas coast, with even higher isolated totals possible, according to the National Hurricane Center.

On Wednesday the NWS said there is "a high probability" of flash flooding in southern coastal Texas. Tornadoes or waterspouts are possible.

Areas along the Texas coast were seeing some road flooding and dangerous rip currents Wednesday, and waterspouts were spotted offshore.

"Just the wave, just blow you away. It's mind-boggling," said Kevin Hoffstrom who was visiting the Texas coast from Illinois.

Residents along the coast said they were using Alberto as a practice run for what's forecast to be a busy hurricane season.

"We thought it was going to be worse than what it is. And we, you know, put batteries in our flashlights. We, you know, had our cell phones charged and our battery banks filled and did all that just in case, because you never know," said Corpus Christi resident Lana Montuori.

The Texas National Guard has three platoons of more than 40 personnel in total alongside 20 vehicles deployed to the region.


North Texas first responders mobilized to help along the Texas coast.

Fire department personnel from Flower Mound, Arlington, North Richland Hills, Plano, Grand Prairie, Justin and Ennis make up a 22-person strike force team.

Firefighters with the North Richland Hills Fire Department deployed to Victoria to help with response to TS Alberto.

Meanwhile, the Flower Mound Fire Department said its Ambulance Bus "AmBus" is staged in Weslaco.

The AmBus is part of the Texas Department of State Health Services network of first responders that can be mobilized wherever needed to help with everything from hospital evacuations to mass casualty incidents as well as providing on-site medical services for first responders.


Mexican authorities downplayed the risk posed by Alberto and instead pinned their hopes on its ability to ease the parched region's water needs.

"The (wind) speeds are not such as to consider it a risk," said Tamaulipas state Secretary of Hydrological Resources Raúl Quiroga Álvarez during a news conference late Wednesday. Instead, he suggested people greet Alberto happily. "This is what we've been for for eight years in all of Tamaulipas."

Much of Mexico has been suffering under severe drought, with northern Mexico especially hard hit.

Quiroga noted that the state's reservoirs were low and Mexico owed the United States a massive water debt in their shared use of the Rio Grande.

"This is a win-win event for Tamaulipas," he said.


In nearby Nuevo Leon state, civil protection authorities reported three deaths linked to Alberto's rains.

They said one man died in the La Silla river in the city of Monterrey, the state capital, and that two minors died from electric shocks in the municipality of Allende. Local media reported that the minors were riding a bicycle in the rain.

Nuevo Leon Gov. Samuel García wrote on his account on social media platform X that metro and public transportation services would be suspended in Monterrey from Wednesday night until midday Thursday when Alberto has passed.


In Mexico, residents expressed hope for Alberto bringing rain.

Blanca Coronel Moral, a resident of Tampico, ventured out to the city's waterfront Wednesday to await Alberto's arrival.

"We have been needing this water that we're now getting, thank God. Let's hope that we only get water," said Coronel Moral. "Our lagoon, which gives us drinking water, is completely dry."

Authorities closed schools for the remainder of the week in Tamaulipas as there could be localized flooding.

Some higher locations in Mexico could see as much as 20 inches of rain, which could result in mudslides and flash flooding, especially in the states of Tamaulipas, Coahuila and Nuevo Leon.

Alberto was casting rain showers on both sides of the border, extending up much of the south Texas coast and south to Mexico's Veracruz state.

Alberto was expected to rapidly weaken over land and dissipate Thursday.

Contact Us