Severe Weather Alert: Hurricane Hilary Expected to Bring Heavy Rain and Flooding to Southern California and Southwest

Hurricane Hilary is rapidly intensifying in the Pacific Ocean southwest of Mexico and is expected to bring significant impacts to Southern California and the Southwest by the end of the week and into the first part of next week. The hurricane has strengthened into a Category 2 storm and is forecasted to become a major hurricane as it moves northward off the Pacific coast of southern Baja.[0] It is currently located about 445 miles south of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and is moving west-northwest at 14 mph.[1]

Forecasters predict that Hurricane Hilary will bring heavy rain, strong winds, and flash flooding to parts of California, Nevada, and Arizona on Sunday and Monday.[2] Southern California and southern Nevada could see between 2 to 4 inches of rain, with some areas expecting rainfall totals of over 10 inches. Mountains in Riverside and San Diego counties could see 4 to 8 inches of rain, possibly up to 10 inches on some eastern slopes. Lower desert areas could receive 5 to 7 inches of rain.[3] Coastal areas are anticipated to receive between 1 and 1.5 inches of rain, while valleys could see 1.5 to 2 inches.[3]

While Hurricane Hilary is unlikely to still be a hurricane when it reaches Southern California, it could still be classified as a tropical storm.[3] The National Weather Service's Los Angeles office stated that the last time a tropical storm made landfall in California in the 20th century was in September of 1939.[3] If Hilary does make landfall in California, it would be the first tropical storm to do so in 84 years.[4]

The cooler waters off the coast of California are expected to weaken Hurricane Hilary, but the storm could still bring heavy rainfall, high winds, and dangerous coastal swells.[5] The Mexican government has issued tropical storm warnings for the southern portions of Baja California Sur, and a tropical storm watch is in effect for parts of western Mexico.[6]

The National Hurricane Center advises that Hilary could bring significant impacts to the Baja California Peninsula and the southwestern United States, including heavy rain and flooding.[7] The storm's path is forecasted to take it across the Baja California Peninsula into the southwestern United States over the weekend and into Monday.[8]

The National Weather Service warns that the storm's arrival in Southern California and the Desert Southwest this weekend and early next week will bring locally heavy rain, flash flooding, high surf, coastal flooding, rip currents, and the potential for storm surge.[9] Cruise ships and shore excursions in the region may be affected by the heavy rainfall and flash flooding.

While the storm is expected to weaken before making landfall, it is still crucial to monitor the progress of Hurricane Hilary and stay updated on the latest forecasts and advisories. The storm's remnants are likely to bring flooding rain and strong winds to parts of California, including the Los Angeles Basin.[10] Heavy rainfall is expected to peak on Sunday and Monday, causing large swells along the coast.

As Hurricane Hilary continues to intensify and move closer to the Southwest, it is important for residents and visitors in the affected areas to stay informed and prepared for potential impacts. Following the guidance of local officials and taking necessary precautions can help ensure the safety of individuals and communities during this severe weather event.

0. “Hurricane Hilary influencing Idaho's projected rain totals for Sunday-Tuesday”, 17 Aug. 2023,

1. “Hurricane Hilary intensifying on path toward Southwest US” WFTV Orlando, 17 Aug. 2023,

2. “Heat persists, major storm on the way” kuna noticias y kuna radio, 17 Aug. 2023,

3. “Riverside County Braces for Heavy Rain, Wind as Hurricane Hilary Strengthens” NBC Palm Springs, 17 Aug. 2023,

4. “How will Hurricane Hilary impact the High Desert?”, 18 Aug. 2023,

5. “Storm Coming: Driving Tips and Where to Get Sandbags”, 17 Aug. 2023,

6. “Hurricane Hilary strengthens to Category 2, expected to bring rain to Oregon” Fox 12 Oregon, 17 Aug. 2023,

7. “The Daily Weather Update from FOX Weather: California could see rare impacts from Hilary” Fox Weather , 17 Aug. 2023,

8. “As the monsoon weakens focus turns to tropical storm Hilary” KSBY News, 17 Aug. 2023,

9. “Hilary becomes a major hurricane; AccuWeather expects dangerous flooding from California to Arizona” Yahoo News, 16 Aug. 2023,

10. “Hurricane Hilary strengthens to Category 3 on path toward Southern California” CBS News, 18 Aug. 2023,

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