Tropical downpours target Mexico, Central America as East Pacific awakens
Heavy monsoon rains triggered flash flooding in Jaipur, India, on Aug. 14, causing floodwaters to race through the city.
AccuWeather meteorologists are keeping a close eye on the East Pacific Ocean, where more than one tropical system may emerge in the coming days, including one near land.
After a brief pause, the East Pacific Ocean Basin began to see more tropical activity in the last week. Tropical Depression 10-E came to life on Monday and is still churning in the middle of the basin, well away from land.
Late Saturday, Tropical Depression 11-E sprang to life in the open waters of the Pacific, a few hundred miles to the northeast of T.D. 10-E.
In addition, several other areas across the ocean are looking favorable for tropical development by the middle of the week.
As such, shipping and boating interests across the basin should be on alert for areas of rough or dangerous seas.
An area south of the Baja Peninsula contains a pool of warm water, and is one likely zone for a tropical system to develop by early next week.
"A low pressure southwest of the Baja will be moving through an area favorable for tropical development, and could spawn a tropical depression or storm by the end of the weekend," said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Adam Douty.
The next names on the 2020 East Pacific storm list are Fausto and Genevieve.
Any organized tropical system looks to continue on a northwestward trajectory into early week, limiting the impacts to out at sea.
"The system will be tracking into cooler waters by early week, allowing any system that develops to weaken shortly after forming," Douty added.
Another region of the East Pacific, closer to Mexico and South America, has the same favorable environment which could produce an additional tropical system by early week.
"This system poses the greatest threat to land of all the possible tropical systems in the East Pacific right now. It also has the potential to become a tropical storm, or even a hurricane by early week," explained Douty.
"Current indications are that the core of the heaviest rain and strongest winds will remain offshore, but the track of the tropical low will play a leading role in how impactful this system is to those on land," warned Douty.
A track mostly parallel the coastline is currently expected; however, should a stronger tropical system form, and track closer to land, more widespread damaging wind gusts may also be of a concern for the beaches.
No matter the strength of the tropical system, the outer reaches of the storm will bring even more tropical moisture to this region. Therefore, the greatest threat from this system will be heavy, tropical downpours as they spread from southeast to northwest through the weekend and into early week. While some rain will make it inland, the heaviest rainfall is likely to stay at the coast and the mountainous terrain nearest to the southern shores.
With the steep terrain so close to the coastline, mudslides will be a concern for any area inundated with round after round of tropical rainfall.
This tropical system, depending on how quickly it pulls away from Mexico this week, could help to enhance rainfall across the country even into midweek.
This same area along the coast from El Salvador and Guatemala to far-southern Mexico was already directly impacted by a tropical system this season.
Tropical Storm Amanda, the first named tropical system in the basin for the 2020 season, made landfall in southeastern Guatemala on May 31. The storm, while short-lived brought heavy tropical rainfall to the region, triggering flooding and mudslides, and killing at least one person.
Amanda fell apart, but a tropical depression later emerged in the Bay of Campeche before becoming Cristobal in the Atlantic Ocean Basin and making landfall in Louisiana.
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