The morning after Hurricane Nicholas, since downgraded to a tropical storm, passed through Brazoria County, officials worked to assess damages.
A 10 a.m. update from the National Hurricane Center placed the storm about 10 miles southeast of Houston, moving northeast at 6 mph with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph.
Regarding downed trees and loss of power, it left a fair amount of damage behind.
“We’ve got I believe 112,000 customers in Brazoria County without power,” Brazoria County Judge Matt Sebesta said Tuesday morning.
CenterPoint Energy and Texas-New Mexico Power both had crews out assessing and working to restore power throughout the county, Sebesta said.
Hurricane Nicholas's impact Tuesday morning left almosr 115,000 residents without power as of 9:30 a.m., according to PowerOutage.us.
CenterPoint Energy's customers were impacted the most, with 94,558 Brazoria County residents without light. CenterPoint Energy officials reported this morning more than 435,000 customers were without electricity in the Houston area.
A CenterPoint Energy news release stated crews began their damage assessment and service restoration process. The process begins with facilities vital to safety, health and welfare, such as hospitals, water treatment plants and public service facilities, the news release read.
"After key facilities, the company follows its priority restoration process by making repairs to electrical facilities that will return power to the largest number of customers first, then continue the restoration process by prioritizing repairs to benefit the greatest number of customers, until power is returned to everyone," the release states
Texas-New Mexico Power reported 20,302 customers left powerless by the storm.
Full restoration for most customers is expected by 7 p.m. today, a company statement read.
“They had to wait until daylight and until the winds died down, and we need to remember some of these crews just came back from Louisiana where they’ve been assisting with Hurricane Ida recovery,” Sebesta said. “They’re hitting the ground running this morning and hopefully later in the day we’ll get an estimate of when we might have power reestablished.”
Road and bridge crews worked throughout the night to remove downed trees and limbs to keep roads passable, Sebesta said. There are some downed trees and impassable roads throughout the county, which are being assessed by the road and bridge department, Sheriff Bo Stallman said. The Brazoria County Sheriff’s Office will release more information as they receive it, he said.
As of Tuesday morning, no National Guard troops are expected to assist with cleanup, Sebesta said.
“We only had one call for help overnight, some elderly folks from Dallas who were staying at the beach,” Sebesta said. “I think once someone got out there and talked to them they understood and they decided to ride it out. They just weren’t used to this type of situation.”
Both Stallman and Sebesta urged people to stay home and stay safe.
“Be patient for power to become restored and be safe from all the loose power lines,” Stallman said. “A lot of them are still hot, so please be cautious of surroundings and the dangers that the downed lines present, and the trees coming down as well. Just please be safe.”
“We’re out surveying the damage now with our operational manager and checking to see,” Lake Jackson Mayor Gerald Roznovsky said. “Of course being a tree city we have trees down everywhere. We have trees down and power is a big issue for us.”
Although Lake Jackson saw no injuries, Roznosky said the fire department had many calls for down trees on people’s vehicles and homes.
“They had one fire they responded to, but it wasn’t storm related,” Roznovsky said. “Emergency responders responded to over 179 calls last night, which is about three times what they normally see in a 24-hour period, between PD, EMS and fire department, which were storm related.”
Property damage is relatively minimal in Freeport, City Manager Tim Kelty said.
“This morning all of the roads are open and passable, although there is still a lot of debris out,” he said.
There were no calls of injuries, to Freeport Police Chief Ray Garivey’s knowledge, he said.
Many traffic lights are out throughout the county, including Lake Jackson, and people are urged to treat all non-functioning traffic lights and missing stop signs as four-way stops, Roznovsky said.
West of the Brazos communities are still assessing their damage but have not reported any major flooding incidents.
West Columbia work crews are actively surveying the town and repairing any damaged power lines and facilities, Mayor Laurie Kincannon said in a statement.
A lot of the city remained without electricity as of 9:15 a.m. but some stores are open and operating, she said.
In Clute, there were some spots with high water and trees down, no power and some generator issues, Mayor Calvin Shiftlet said.
“Other than that, we’re ready to start cleaning up,” he said. “I think we’ve weathered the storm fairly well.”