LOCAL HILARY UPDATE: Rainfall totals, forecast
Last updated 8/21/2023 at 12:07pm
Post-Tropical Cyclone Hilary, which once loomed large over the Pacific coast, is now rapidly moving inland, bringing the potential for life-threatening and even locally catastrophic flooding to portions of the Southwestern United States, according to a bulletin from the National Weather Service's National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami.
Locally, in Fallbrook, Bonsall, Rainbow, and Pala areas, there is a 15% chance of rain today, dissipating to about 1% by evening, according to Accuweather.com.
In Southwest Riverside County, there is a 70% chance of rain today, according to Accuweather.com. NWS predicts temps in the high 70s in the greater Fallbrook area and Temecula. Temps will be in the 80s in Lake Elsinore.
Different areas of the Fallbrook/Bonsall area to Lake Elsinore received 2.5 to 3.60 inches of rain between Friday afternoon and Monday morning. In Anza, 4.6 inches were recorded. In Hemet and San Jacinto, about 1.5 inches fell. In Pinon Hills, 6.5 inches of rain fell and on Mt. San Jacinto at 8500 ft. 8.52 inches fell. Oceanside Harbor received 2.38 inches, Vista 2.12 inches and Escondido received 2.66 inches.
Mt. Laguna in San Diego County at 6000 ft elevation 6.88 inches fell.
Los Angeles County and Santa Clarita Valley were hit harder with up to 7 inches of rain recorded in the local mountains.
Tropical Storm Hilary, having weakened from a Category 1 hurricane, sped up as it entered Southern California on Sunday, prompting evacuation warnings and cancellation of flights and trains in the region. Residents were asked to remain indoors.
Governor Newsom declared a State of Emergency ahead of the storm and San Diego schools closed for Monday.
Heavy rainfall in Baja California claimed one life. A man died as he and his family were swept out to sea while crossing a local stream, according to Mexican officials.
Locally, first responders were busy with traffic accidents, in addition to the regular medical calls they work each day.
As of 2 am on Monday, August 21, the storm's center was located approximately 390 miles north of San Diego, California. Despite Hilary's status as a post-tropical cyclone, its maximum sustained winds remain at 35 mph, with even stronger gusts recorded. The system is traveling northward at 29 mph and is projected to swiftly cross Nevada today.
While coastal warnings related to Hilary have been discontinued and there are currently no coastal watches or warnings in effect, residents are advised not to be complacent. The lingering effects of the storm, especially in terms of rainfall, are substantial.
Southern California and Southern Nevada are bracing for additional rainfall amounts ranging between 2 to 4 inches today. Some isolated areas could witness storm total amounts of up to 12 inches. The ensuing flash and urban flooding could be catastrophic in localized regions. Oregon and Idaho aren't spared either, with anticipated rainfall totals between 1 to 3 inches and localized amounts up to 5 inches. This is expected to result in significant flash flooding in places through Tuesday morning.
Moreover, despite its weakened state, Hilary is set to produce strong and gusty winds in areas of elevated terrain. On the coast, large swells continue to pose risks to the Baja California Peninsula and southern California, with life-threatening surf and rip current conditions still a major concern.
The next update will be at 8 am.
Information is taken from National Weather Service, The Weather Prediction Center, National Hurricane Center, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), WeatherCurrents.com, and Accuweather.com.