Here’s Why Tropical Storm Karen Won’t Affect Houston

Tropical Storm Karen is still hundreds of miles from the Gulf Coast, but it could turn into a hurricane within a day. At this point, Houston probably won't see any effects from the storm.

Karen is more than 400 miles south of New Orleans right now, but could turn into a weak hurricane within 24-36 hours.

Chris Hebert is a hurricane expert with Houston-based Impact Weather. He says our part of the Gulf Coast will  probably avoid Karen’s winds and rain, mostly because of a cold front arriving Saturday. 

“I’m fairly certain that Houston doesn’t need to worry about it and I’m just debating whether places as far west as New Orleans might need to worry about it. I think they could get some rain out of it, possibly some tropical storm conditions into New Orleans, but over here, we’re going to have a cold front that’s reaching the Houston area sometime late Saturday evening about the same time the storm is over off the coast of souhteast Louisiana.” 

He says even though the end of September usually means we’re out of danger when it comes to hurricanes here, there’s always a chance we’ll be affected by an October storm.  

“October is not the end of hurricane season. We have hurricanes through October frequently. But it is a lesson in that the Houston area is typically not impacted in October because we are getting these fronts down to the Gulf Coast.”

Herbert says Karen will probably be primarily a rain event wherever it hits the Gulf Coast. It’s the 11th named storm of the current hurricane season.


Edel Howlin

Edel Howlin

Producer, Houston Matters

Edel is an executive producer of special projects working on station-wide, multi-platform initiatives such as DiverseCity. At Houston Public Media, Edel started as a reporter covering veteran issues and the quirkier side of life in Houston. Before her time in public radio she worked for local commercial station Cox as an on...

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