Hurricane Beryl: 8 dead in storm, high heat poses dangers for cleanup

People installing plywood on their home before Hurricane Beryl made landfall.

Texas and Louisana residents are recovering from the impact of Hurricane Beryl, which made landfall a second time in Texas on Monday.

The storm was a Category 1 hurricane and the first from this season’s Atlantic hurricane season.

Update 9:57 a.m. ET, July 9: The death toll from the former Hurricane Beryl has risen to eight. Seven were killed in the Houston area while one person was killed in Louisiana, KDFW reported.

Power is still out for more than 2.3 million people, CNN reported. But as cleanup continues, the heat will pose dangerous working conditions since there is no air conditioning. High temperatures are expected to be in the 90s with heat indices as high as 105.

“The lack of proper cooling combined with many people outdoors cleaning up after Beryl could produce dangerous heat conditions,” the National Weather Service said.

Beryl is now a low pressure system.

Update 2:20 p.m. ET, July 8: At least two people were killed in the storm and more than 2 million people were without power, The Associated Press reported. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said crews are not able to start restoring electricity until the wind lessens.

In addition to having no power, and flooding, the region has high temperatures in the low 90s Tuesday and Wednesday but with humidity, it will feel like it is over 100, CNN reported. It will be a triple-digit heat index through Sunday.

There have been at least 15 high water rescues by Monday afternoon in Houston. One man had to be rescued from the roof of his pickup when it got stuck in a flooded area. Crews used an extension ladder from a fire truck to get him a life preserver and a tether to move him.

Two people were killed by falling trees that hit their homes.

One victim was a man in Humble County, the other was a woman in Harris County.

Flooding could last for days Patrick said.

“This is not a one-day event,” he said, according to the AP.

Hurricane Beryl was downgraded to a tropical storm with sustained winds of 60 mph, CNN reported.

Original report: When Beryl made landfall, it had sustained winds of at least 74 miles per hour with gusts as high as 90 mph, The New York Times reported.

Texas’s acting governor declared 121 counties a disaster and put the National Guard, search-and-rescue teams, and other first responders on alert.

Beryl is the earliest in-season hurricane to make landfall in Texas since Hurricane Bonnie, which hit the Lonestar State on June 26, 1986.

The hurricane hit the Caribbean and the Yucatan Peninsula last week. Nearly a dozen people died before Beryl weakened to a tropical storm. It strengthened overnight, becoming a hurricane for a second time.

Beryl is expected to weaken to a tropical storm Monday and a tropical depression Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service. While still in the Atlantic, Beryl was the earliest storm to reach Category 5, The Associated Press reported.

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