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August 21, 2023 2:33 PM IST

Tropical Storm Hilary drenches Southern California

climate | Hurricane Hilary | Hilary | Tropical storm Hilary | Northern Mexico | Mexico | nature's havoc | climate change

Tropical Storm Hilary arrived in California on Sunday, August 20, with forecasters warning of possibly catastrophic flooding after the system pummeled Mexico’s Baja California peninsula with heavy rains. The forecasters have warned of a “potentially historic amount of rain” and severe flooding in the usually arid part of the United States, as Tropical Storm Hilary raced in from Mexico.

According to reports, one person died in Mexico amid reports of flash flooding in the peninsula, where raging torrents gushed down streets in cities such as Mexicali, Rosarito, Tijuana and Ensenada.

Hilary made landfall earlier on Sunday in the northern area of the state, where nearly 1,900 people, mostly from the more vulnerable low-income areas, were evacuated to shelters, according to the Mexican military.

Mexico’s Navy had also evacuated about 850 people from five islands in the path of Hilary, which was previously designated a Category 4 hurricane before it weakened.

As of Sunday afternoon in southern California, Hilary had sustained maximum winds of 95 kilometres per hour (60 miles per hour). The storm, an exceedingly rare event for Southern California, was moving at 37 km/h (23 mph).

California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency for much of Southern California, with flash flood warnings in effect throughout a region more accustomed to drought.

(Inputs from Reuters)

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