A damaged stop light blocks a street as Hurricane Harvey makes landfall in Corpus Christi, Texas. (AP Photo)
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas: Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas coast on Friday as a Category 4 storm, bringing life-threatening winds and the likelihood of catastrophic flooding as the most powerful storm in over a decade hit the mainland United States.
The hurricane made landfall northeast of Corpus Christi around 10pm CDT (0300 GMT) with maximum winds of 130 miles per hour (209kmph). The storm is expected to move slowly over the Texas and Louisiana coasts for days, with forecasts for storm surges of up to 13 feet (four metres) and over three feet (90cm) of rain.
As many as six million people were believed to be in Harvey's path, as is the heart of America's oil refining operations. The storm's impact on refineries has already pushed up gasoline prices while the US Environmental Protection Agency lifted some rules on gasoline to reduce shortages.
Fuelled by the warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico, Harvey became the first Category 4 hurricane to wallop the United States since Charley in 2004 and the first to hit Texas since Carla in 1961.
About 30 miles (45km) from Corpus Christi and moving northwest, Harvey caused scattered power outages both on the coast near Galveston and 100 miles (160km) inland.