The storm had been riding on the water, parallel to the Texas coast, causing it to strengthen from a tropical storm into a hurricane late Monday prior to hitting land early Tuesday. Nearly 200,000 customers were without power in the Lone Star State when Nicholas made landfall after midnight, and that figure soared to nearly 350,000 before dawn.
Hurricanes have 74 miles per hour or higher winds, and on Monday night, Nicholas reached sustained winds of 76 mph with higher gusts, according to the National Weather Service. The hurricane roared ashore Tuesday at around 12:30 a.m. CT on the eastern part of Texas' Matagorda Peninsula, about 10 miles southwest of Sargent Beach. Maximum sustained winds at that time were 75 mph with higher gusts at landfall, according to the National Weather Service.