Storm Nicholas turns into a hurricane as it heads toward Houston

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Tropical Storm Nicholas strengthened to hurricane status just as it was about to hit the US Gulf Coast, with Houston in its path, the National Hurricane Center said Monday night.

Nicholas has maximum sustained winds of 75 miles (120 kilometers) per hour, with stronger gusts. The storm is expected to dump up to 18 inches of rain in the Houston area, weather officials said.

Nicholas “is bringing heavy rain, strong winds and storm surge to parts of the central and upper coasts of Texas,” the NHC said in its bulletin Tuesday at 0300 GMT.

(AFP)