Families and business owners waited in line for hours to get sandbags in Corpus Christi, Texas, on July 24 as Tropical Storm Hanna moved closer to the coastline.
BILL WADELL: The barricades are up and the gates are closed here at Whitecap Beach. Patrols are underway. And the people who are trying to head out here to the sand are being told to pack up and head home. Authorities are worried about the growing threat of a strong rip current here as Hanna moves in. Police officers, lifeguards, and other local officials drove up and down these beaches, warning families that it was time to pack up and leave.
RAFAEL MUNGUIA: I think they should have left it alone for at least until tomorrow or so. I think they kind of shut it down a little too early.
BILL WADELL: People trying to soak up some sun before the tropical storm were not happy. Some families traveled from as far away as Colorado, others from cities across Texas.
ALEX NEAGOE: I don't know why they're closing it. I mean, it's not raining, yet. It's sunny. They should have left it open till 5:00.
BILL WADELL: You a little disappointed?
ALEX NEAGOE: Disappointed, a little bit. But we got an hour. We're happy. Yesterday was beautiful.
BILL WADELL: A few miles from the beach, city crews were out in the scorching heat and humidity, filling sandbags for families and business owners worried about flooding.
RICHARD GONZALES: Oh, I really appreciate it. I mean, the work that they're doing-- it's hot and humid out here. And the bags are heavy. So I really appreciate all the work that they're doing here. Our street floods with the rainstorms. But hopefully we'll be OK.
JAIME MARTINEZ: They're doing lots. And they're really helping us out. You know, they're-- they're out there. They-- they got a strong crew out there. And they're working hard. They're nonstop. I mean, you can see what they're doing. They're sweating. But they know what they gotta do to help us out. And they're doing real good. God bless 'em.
BILL WADELL: Officials here are now dealing with two emergencies-- Hanna, moving closer to the coastline, and also a surge of COVID-19 cases. They're asking everyone to have their emergency kits ready. And those should now include a face mask.
In Corpus Christi, Texas, for AccuWeather, I'm Bill Wadell.