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Edouard weakens to tropical depression as it moves inland

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  • NEW: Edouard weakens as it moves into Central Texas
  • High water closes small stretch of interstate near Houston, officials say
  • Edouard makes landfall on Texas coast near Louisiana line
  • Follow Edouard's path with CNN's Hurricane Tracker
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(CNN) -- Edouard weakened to a tropical depression Tuesday afternoon after moving inland from the Gulf of Mexico and bringing much-needed rain to Central Texas.

Edouard was a tropical storm when it made landfall in the McFaddin National Wildlife Refuge just west of the Louisiana-Texas border earlier Tuesday, but its movement and wind speed had slowed by early afternoon.

Flooding in and around Houston, Texas, on Tuesday morning closed eastbound lanes along a stretch of Interstate 10 near Hankamer and Wallaceville, "after 10 to 12 vehicles slipped off the road," a Chambers County sheriff's deputy said.

No injuries were reported.

At about 5 p.m. ET, Edouard was centered about 35 miles north-northeast of Houston with maximum sustained winds near 35 mph. It was moving west-northwest at 9 mph and was expected to maintain that pace for the next day or so until it dissipates, forecasters said.

"A continued west-northwest motion with some reduction in forward speed is expected over the next day or two ... taking Edouard across Central Texas," the National Hurricane Center said. See a projection of Edouard's path »

High winds downed trees and power lines in Beaumont and Port Arthur, both east of Houston. Four to 6 inches of rain were reported in that area.

"We have a lot of wind and rain right now," Galveston, Texas, Mayor Lyda Ann Thomas said Tuesday morning. Galveston power lines spark in storm

"Of course, we always feel very fortunate when we don't get a direct hit," Thomas said. "Galveston is used to tropical storms. Fortunately, this did not become a hurricane." Video Watch wind, rain pound Galveston »

Galveston was nearly wiped out by a hurricane in 1900 that killed 8,000 people. It is the nation's worst natural disaster.

Two years later, Galveston built a sea wall 17 feet above sea level.

"It's done a good job since 1902," Thomas said.


The storm was expected to dump up to 5 inches of rain in some southwestern Louisiana coastal parishes. Isolated amounts up to 10 inches could fall in some areas, the hurricane center said, and tornadoes were possible. Video Watch water rising in Louisiana »

Flooding from the storm surge -- which was expected to be 2 feet to 4 feet above normal tide levels in some of the warning areas -- would gradually subside during the afternoon, the hurricane center said.

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