Hurricane Nicholas blowing through Brazoria County on Monday night shook up some residents, though not everybody was worried.
“I just experienced high winds and rain,” Holiday Lakes resident Charles Jones said. “I wasn’t scared; it was just another day, another storm. I went to work last night and they didn’t send us home but everybody decided to go home.”
Tuesday morning, he was out purchasing gas for his generator to keep his refrigerator and freezer cool, he said.
A lot of residents were left without power, but the damage could’ve been so much worse, Sweeny resident Pam Zwahr said.
“A lot of us don’t have power right now but that’s just a minor thing, we will get that back in time,” Zwahr said. “I think we got by a lot easier than Louisiana did. The amount of trees that have just fallen just blew my mind. I couldn’t believe all the trees that were down. Personally I just have a lot of limbs and a couple of trees down and that’s all. I thought a tree might come through my window and I moved my bed. I didn’t hear a thing after I went to sleep.”
Others, like Michelle Bonner, who lives outside Angleton, were more concerned.
“The power blinked on and off a few times,” Bonner said.
While she didn’t lose power nor was her house damaged, she was scared, she said.
“I was petrified,” she said. “All kinds of trees and limbs were falling and hitting the house and it was scary.”
In Surfside Beach, Justin Dupree and his family experienced a lot of wind, but “it wasn’t too bad” overall, he said.
By Tuesday morning, Dupree was shopping for food in Angleton, with a lot of other places throughout the county closed because of a lack of electricity.
“The house was shaking real bad,” he said of the storm. “We had waist deep water underneath the house. … It wasn’t too bad, just a little shaky and we lost power.”
Local insurance companies began seeing claims for property damage as early as Tuesday morning.
“I did have calls routed so we were getting calls through the morning but it’s still too early to know how many claims have been submitted,” Neal Insurance owner Clyde Neal said.
Hurricane Nicholas ended up being more intense than was largely expected, and Neal had already seen a dozen claims and expected more to come, he said.
“We expect the number of claims to rise throughout the week,” Neal said. “A lot of people who have beach houses don’t live in those houses year-round and it might be a few days before they can go check out their beach house. Some people won’t realize they have roof damage until we get another hard rain.”
Farmers Insurance agent Bryan Douget, who offices in Angleton, said quite a few claims were coming in Tuesday and were being handled remotely.
“Majority of the damage is due to trees breaking limbs and falling on stuff so far,” he said. “I really have no idea what the damage will be dollar-wise. In the billions, I’m sure, between all insurance companies.”
As of Tuesday his office had received about 70 claims, he said.
“I say it’s probably going to double that, 100 to around 140,” Douget said. “That’s my guess.”