Corpus Christi, already in the throes of a peak in COVID-19 cases, now faces dangers from Tropical Storm Hanna. The National Hurricane Center has issued a hurricane warning for a section of the Texas coast from Baffin Bay to Sargent – an area that includes Corpus Christi Bay, Copany Bay, Aransas Bay, San Antonio bay and Matagorda bay.
The National Weather Service has issued a “life threatening storm surge” warning for areas that include Corpus Christi, Rockport and Port Lavaca. Seeking to help, Governor Greg Abbott sent emergency resources to the Coastal Bend area and the Rio Grande Valley, where the governor is simultaneously sending more than 1,000 medical staff to help fight the novel coronavirus, which has devastated south Texas.
The city already closed a drive-through coronavirus test site in Corpus Christi at least until Tuesday, officials said.
“Remember to know,” Corpus Christi Mayor Joe McComb said, “we are also fighting the coronavirus.”
It was a stark reminder for an area that has been a hotspot for the coronavirus, adding well over 2,000 COVID-19 cases during each of the first two weeks of July. At least 2% of the population was infected, or one in 50 people. Now the region is bracing for a storm amid a pandemic.
The virus doesn’t always spread so quickly in Nueces County, which reported less than 100 cases and three deaths before the stay-at-home order from Texas expired on April 30. But people have spent the summer congregating on the beaches and restaurants of the popular seaside community. , and now the county has seen a spike in cases.
Nueces County Medical Examiner Adel Shaker was shocked last Friday to learn that a baby boy under 6 months old tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, and has died shortly after.
Storms are nothing new to the Coastal Bend area. McComb said have helped the community to come together. Nueces County Judge Barbara Canales agreed and said the area was ready for this storm.
“I join Mayor McComb in saying there is no doubt that we have a great experience dealing with these kinds of storms,” Canales said. “Where the coronavirus may have caught us off guard, a hurricane does not. We know what to do. We know how to help you. “
McComb underscored the reality of the coronavirus when he warned residents who live in flood-prone neighborhoods of the prospect of an evacuation.
“Take several masks with you because you might be there a few days if you are in a flood zone,” McComb said. “We don’t want to expose anyone during this storm. … Even when you are at home, I recommend that you wear a mask if you are in crowded conditions.
Correction: Due to editing errors, the name of the tropical storm was misspelled in an earlier version of this story, and the name of the National Hurricane Center was incorrectly stated.