Gov. Abbott readies state’s response to Tropical Storm Nicholas

Nicholas expected to bring significant rainfall

Gov. Greg Abbott speaks at a press conference regarding Texas emergency response to an unprecedented winter storm gripping Texas on Feb. 13, 2021.

In response to severe weather threats along the Gulf Coast due to Tropical Storm Nicholas, Gov. Greg Abbott on Sunday ordered the Texas State Operations Center (SOC) to increase its readiness to Level II (Escalated Response).

The SOC will operate at Level II, beginning at 9 a.m., Monday, to coordinate the state’s tropical storm response. Nicholas is expected to begin impacting the Texas coast on Monday.

Nicholas will likely bring significant rainfall and flooding to the entire Gulf Coast as it moves slowly across the state, forecasters said.

Gov. Abbott is urging Texans to prepare for the incoming tropical storm ahead of time.

“The State Operations Center has increased its readiness and is prepared to assist local officials in their response to Tropical Storm Nicholas,” Abbott said in a release. “As this storm approaches Texas, I urge our Southeast Texas and Gulf Coast communities to prepare now to protect themselves and their loved ones from the severe weather conditions that Tropical Storm Nicholas will bring.”

The following resources have been activated:

  • Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (Texas A&M Task Force One): 6 Swift Water Rescue Boat Squads and 8 Overhead Packages.
  • Texas Parks and Wildlife Department: Game Warden Boat Teams.
  • Texas Military Department: 5 Ground Transportation Platoons With High Profile Vehicles.
  • Texas Department of State Health Services: Texas Emergency Medical Task Force (EMTF) Severe Weather Packages.

The following actions and resources have been rostered for potential activation if needed:

  • Texas A&M Forest Service: Saw Crews and Incident Management Teams.
  • Texas Department of Transportation: Monitoring Road Conditions And Prepositioned Water-Filled Barriers.
  • Texas Department of Public Safety: Texas Highway Patrol Search And Rescue Aircraft and The Tactical Marine Unit.
  • Public Utility Commission: Power Outage Monitoring And Coordination With Utility Providers.

Texans are urged to follow these flood preparedness and safety tips during severe weather events:

  • Know types of flood risk in your area. Visit FEMA’s Flood Map Service Center for information at
  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
  • Build an emergency supply kit. For more information on how to build a kit, visit
  • Keep important documents in a waterproof container. Create password-protected digital copies.
  • Protect your property. Move valuables to higher levels. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves. Consider a sump pump with a battery.
  • Be extremely cautious of any water on roads or in creeks, streams, storm drains, or other areas – never attempt to cross flowing streams or drive across flooded roadways and always observe road barricades placed for your protection. Remember, turn around, don’t drown.

For more flood safety tips, visit

Texans can also visit for resources and tips on how to stay safe during flood events.

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