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Storm speeds up as Southern California residents prepare for 'catastrophic' flooding

The storm weakened to a Category 1 with maximum sustained winds around 90 mph Saturday night, the National Weather Service said.

Coverage on this live blog has ended. Please click here for the latest updates.

As Hilary got closer to Southern California Saturday, officials zeroed in on what could be the most affected areas — believed to include inland mountains, deserts and valleys.

Palm Springs could see 6 inches of rain, and the nearby Santa Rosa mountains could see 10, all within a day’s time, according to NBC News’ Climate & Weather Unit.

Hilary could make landfall Sunday morning in northern Baja California before moving toward San Diego County, the National Weather Service’s San Diego office said.

The tropical cyclone’s expected downgrade to tropical storm by the time it reaches the United States had yet to reduce estimates of its destructive potency on the ground.

Officials in San Bernardino County ordered evacuations for some mountain and foothill communities and Orange County officials recommended evacuations in Silverado and Williams canyons.

Anticipating serious damage, California Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency.

With waves along the Southern California coast expected to reach a possible 8 feet through Monday, the state shuttered the beaches it runs from the U.S.-Mexico border to Los Angeles County’s southern boundary, and the U.S. Coast Guard urged boaters and beachgoers to stay away from the water.

What to know about the Category 1 storm

  • Hurricane Hilary strengthened to a Category 4 storm but has since been downgraded to a Category 1, forecasters said.
  • The storm is expected to weaken further and make landfall in Southern California as a tropical storm, the first since Sept. 25, 1939, according to the National Weather Service.
  • The National Weather Service warned Saturday the storm would bring the potential for isolated tornadoes across portions of Southern California. In addition to life-threatening surf and rip current conditions along the beaches of Southern California.
  • The system could bring "catastrophic and life-threatening flooding" over Baja California and the Southwestern U.S. through early next week, according to the National Weather Service.
  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency has pre-positioned staff and supplies in Southern California, President Joe Biden told reporters at Camp David.
44d ago / 7:30 AM UTC

Storm tracker: Hurricane Hilary

44d ago / 6:11 AM UTC

People fill up sandbags in Long Beach

Long Beach lifeguards fill up sandbags for residents ahead of Hurricane Hilary, in Long Beach, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 19, 2023.
Long Beach lifeguards fill up sandbags for residents ahead of Hurricane Hilary, in Long Beach, Calif., Saturday.Damian Dovarganes / AP
Long Beach residents pull wagons with sandbags ahead of Hurricane Hilary in Long Beach, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 19, 2023.
Long Beach residents pull wagons with sandbags ahead of Hurricane Hilary in Long Beach, Calif., Saturday.Damian Dovarganes / AP
44d ago / 5:10 AM UTC

San Diego County declares state of emergency

SAN DIEGO — Top San Diego County officials tonight proclaimed a state of emergency ahead of the anticipated impacts of Hilary.

The proclamation will allow county government to access necessary resources to respond to emergencies and damage associated with the storm.

The proclamation followed Gov. Gavin Newsom's state of emergency declaration earlier today.

44d ago / 4:58 AM UTC

State beaches, parks closed ahead of storm

California State Parks said today it was shutting down state beaches from the U.S.-Mexico border to Bolsa Chica near the southern boundary of Los Angeles County as a precaution.

Beach closures were scheduled tomorrow and Monday, state parks said in a statement.

Additionally, state parks expected to be in the path of Hilary, including Cuyamaca State Park, Ocotillo Wells State Vehicular Recreation Area, and Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, were also scheduled to be closed tomorrow and Monday, the department said.

Those inland locations, near what was forecast to be the hardest hit communities — desert areas and inland mountain ranges — were the subject of flooding concerns, state parks said.

Reservations for camping at those locations were being canceled through Tuesday, they said. Current campers could stay as scheduled but were being warned about the dangers posed by Hillary, state parks said.

"More park units may be closed with little notice," state parks said in the statement. "The department will continue to use a monitor and adapt strategy to protect the safety of its employees and the public."

44d ago / 4:33 AM UTC

With rock slides and mudflow likely, parts of SoCal could be cut off

Parts of Southern California could be cut off from supplies and first responders as rock slides and mudflow from tropical cyclone Hilary were expected Sunday, according an analysis by NBC News’ Climate & Weather Unit.

Inland and desert communities with the highest forecast rainfall will be prone to those rockslides and mudflow events, forecasters said.

Debris from such incidents can block roadways for hours and even days.

As Hilary moves across the U.S.-Mexico border tomorrow, the worst of its wind and rain appeared to be aimed at inland areas, including mountains and deserts, as well as parts of Imperial, Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

Mountains from the border to the San Bernardino range, as well as desert cities such as Palm Springs and Coachella, were under a flood watch through Monday, the National Weather Service said. Flash flooding was possible.

NBC News forecasters said Palm Springs could see as much as 6 inches of rain Sunday. And, as the storm moves north, the heaviest rain and strongest wind Sunday night will target parts of Nevada, western Utah, and Idaho.

44d ago / 4:07 AM UTC

Hilary weakens to a Category 1 hurricane

Hilary continued to lose muscle as the storm aimed for Southern California Saturday night, weakening from a Category 2 to a Category 1 hurricane, according to the National Hurricane Center's latest data.

The storm's strongest sustained winds were last measured at 90 mph, classifying it as a Category 1 as the tropical cyclone's strength fell from Category 4 in less than a day.

Still, federal forecasters expect the northbound storm to continue as a hurricane as it gets closer to Baja California's west coast overnight before weakening once more to a tropical storm before it reaches the United States.

The Mexican government canceled tropical storm warnings for the southern tip of Baja California Sur, the hurricane center said.

The storm was 535 miles south-southeast of San Diego.

44d ago / 3:55 AM UTC

San Diego County cellphone alert urges drivers to stay off roads

SAN DIEGO — San Diego County officials sent a wireless emergency alert to cellphones tonight that urges motorists to stay off roads if possible as Hilary approaches.

The San Diego County Office of Emergency Services public safety alert warned that "dangerous flash flooding and strong winds are expected" and urged motorists to stay off roadways "unless you must."

Possible perils include flooded roads, downed power lines, and rapidly rising waters along creeks, rivers and and other waterways, and all should be avoided, the alert stated.

Hilary's core is expected to reach Southern California tomorrow afternoon.

44d ago / 3:36 AM UTC

Medano beach in Baja California, Mexico

The Medano beach in Los Cabos, Baja California State, Mexico, during the passage of Hurricane Hilary, on Aug. 19, 2023.
The Medano beach in Los Cabos, Baja California, Mexico, during the passage of Hurricane Hilary, on Saturday.Alfredo Estrella / AFP via Getty Images
Local government lifeguard Julio Cesar Tehuitzin gives instructions to people approaching the beach in Los Cabos, Baja California State, Mexico, during the passage of Hurricane Hilary on Aug. 19, 2023.
Local government lifeguard Julio Cesar Tehuitzin gives instructions to people approaching the beach in Los Cabos, Baja California State, Mexico, during Hurricane Hilary's passage on Saturday.Alfredo Estrella / AFP via Getty Images
44d ago / 3:21 AM UTC

San Bernardino County authorities order evacuations

Evacuations were ordered tonight for San Bernardino mountain and foothill communities forecast to be in Hilary's path.

The county sheriff's department named the communities of Oak Glen, Forest Falls, Mountain Home Village, Angelus Oaks, and Northeast Yucaipa as subject to mandatory evacuations.

No time span was given for the evacuations. Hilary's core was expected to be in Southern California tomorrow afternoon.

Desert and mountain communities, including the Santa Rosa range to the south, were expected to get some of the heaviest wind and rain from the storm. As much as 10 inches of rain could fall in the Santa Rosa Mountains near Palm Springs in a 24-hour span starting tomorrow, according to NBC News' Climate and Weather Unit.

44d ago / 3:04 AM UTC

Voluntary evacuation warning issued for Bond Fire burn area

Voluntary evacuation warnings have been issued for parts of the area burned in the Bond Fire in 2020.

Concern about possible debris flow along or near the burn scar prompted the evacuation warning was issued for Silverado and Williams canyons, according to the Orange County Sheriff's Department.

The National Weather Service issued a flood watch for the county, including the burn scar area, through late tomorrow.

The evacuations were effective today at 4:30 p.m. PT and will run through early Monday.

A map of the affected areas can be seen on the Orange County Sheriff's Department website.

44d ago / 2:53 AM UTC

San Diego's zoo and safari park close in anticipation of storm

The San Diego Zoo and San Diego Safari Park will be closed to visitors tomorrow in anticipation of Tropical Storm Hilary.

"Our grounds have been built and adapted over the years to withstand storms, and we have experts dedicated to evaluating the area for any potential hazards," the zoo said in a statement.

The zoo will also be focusing on the storm's impact on wildlife including pacific pond turtles, native butterflies, burrowing owls and desert tortoises.

“We care for numerous species of wildlife every day, and their health and well-being is our top priority—so, we’re always ready for changing weather conditions that might affect their daily care,” the zoo said.

Wildlife care specialists, horticulturists and various essential teams will remain on the grounds during the storm. The zoo plans to reopen on Monday.

44d ago / 2:35 AM UTC

Hilary speeds up, even as winds weaken

Hilary was speeding up as the storm headed toward Southern California, the National Hurricane Center said today in its latest update on the tropical cyclone.

Its expected arrival was previously advanced from tomorrow night or Monday morning to tomorrow afternoon, federal forecasters said. The storm was expected to cross into the region not from the Pacific, where it has been trying to feed off increasingly cold water from the north, but over the U.S.-Mexico border, they said.

But even as Hilary hit the gas, its winds, the key measure of hurricane strength, were likely to continue to weaken before its U.S. arrival, the hurricane center said.

Already, in the span of a few hours on today, Hilary was downgraded from its status as a major Category 4 hurricane to a Category 2 with maximum sustained winds of 110 mph. Most recently, it was described as a Category 2 with maximum sustained winds of 100 mph, the hurricane center said.

"Continued weakening is expected, but Hilary will still be a hurricane when it approaches the west coast of the Baja California Peninsula tonight," the center said. "Hilary is expected to weaken to a tropical storm before it reaches southern California."

Hilary was an estimated 600 miles south-southeast of San Diego early this evening, the hurricane center said.

44d ago / 2:15 AM UTC

Flash flood risk from Tropical Storm Hilary

44d ago / 1:57 AM UTC

Timeline of Hilary's impacts

Impacts from the storm are expected to be felt in Southern California and Las Vegas starting tomorrow morning.

Here is the latest look from the NBC News Climate and Weather Unit at what residents in some cities may experience and when. All times are local.

San Diego

  • Strongest impacts between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. tomorrow
  • Gusts between 30-40 mph
  • Rainfall totals from 1.5 to 2.5 inches

Los Angeles metro area

  • Strongest impacts between 11 a.m. tomorrow — 8 a.m. Monday
  • Gusts between 20-40 mph
  • Rainfall totals from 2 to 4 inches

Palm Springs

  • Strongest impacts between 12 p.m. and 9 p.m. Sunday
  • Gusts betweeen 40-50 mph
  • Rainfall totals from 4 to 6 inches

Las Vegas

  • Strongest impacts between 1 a.m. and 5 p.m. tomorrow
  • Gusts between 20-40 mph
  • Rainfall totals from 1.5 to 3 inches
44d ago / 1:15 AM UTC

Uber offering free rides to shelters for evacuees

Uber announced it will be providing free rides to temporary shelters for residents who may need to evacuate during Tropical Storm Hilary.

In a partnership with the state of California, the ride-hailing app is offering rides up to $40 if residents do not have other transportation options. Riders may take up to three trips per rider now through Wednesday.

44d ago / 12:40 AM UTC

Lake Mead National Recreation Area closed

44d ago / 12:22 AM UTC

Gov. Newsom declares state of emergency

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Saturday declared a state of emergency ahead of Hilary's expected landing in California tomorrow afternoon.

"Governor Gavin Newsom proclaimed a state of emergency for much of Southern California to support Hurricane Hilary response and recovery efforts as the state continues mobilizing and coordinating resources ahead of the storm’s forecasted impacts starting today," his office said in a statement.

He signed the declaration in San Diego, where he met with Mayor Todd Gloria and National Guard troops.

44d ago / 12:14 AM UTC

Inland mountains could see 10 inches of rain in a day

Among the areas forecast to be hardest hit by Hilary as the storm's core reaches Southern California tomorrow is the Santa Rosa mountains, which form the eastern slopes of the Coachella Valley.

Forecasters say as much as 10 inches of rain could fall in a 24-hour stretch, or as much as two years' rainfall, likely a historic event if it comes to pass, according to an analysis by NBC News' Climate & Weather Unit.

The mountain range runs mainly through Riverside and San Diego counties just west of desert communities such as Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and Coachella.

It enjoys state and federal conservation under the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, and California's Coachella Valley Mountains Conservancy.

Southern California mountains from the U.S.-Mexico border to the San Bernardino Mountains were under a flood watch through Monday, the National Weather Service said. The watch area also includes the Coachella Valley and those desert cities.

The watch means low-lying areas, including creeks and rivers, could flood, the weather service said. Flash flooding was also a possibility.

44d ago / 11:42 PM UTC

Officials searching L.A. County riverbeds for homeless residents

44d ago / 11:10 PM UTC
44d ago / 10:50 PM UTC

Waves from Hilary have arrived, may bypass swaths of SoCal

Strange waves from Hurricane Hilary reached the Southern California coast late Saturday morning, reported Kevin Wallis, director of forecasting at wave prediction business Surfline.

Sets were seen moving north, parallel to the coast in Orange County and likely completely bypassed San Diego County, Wallis said in a series of updates at Surfline's site.

The late-morning display was surprising, he indicated, as Hilary-generated swell wasn't supposed to arrive until hours later. The swell is likely to completely bypass San Diego County.

One place that did get rare waves, some moving north and east, was the Sea of Cortez, normally a surfing-free body of water along Baja California Sur's and Baja California's east coast, Wallis reported.

Waves as high as 8 feet were predicted for the Southern California coast through Monday. The U.S. Coast Guard said in a statement Friday that boaters and beachgoers alike should stay off the water, out of the waves, and even away from the waterline.

It noted that water rescue capabilities will be diminished amid the storm's heavy rains and strong winds.

44d ago / 10:20 PM UTC

"There will be power outages," official warns

A California emergency management official warned that there would be power outages as a result of the storm.

“There will be power outages. Make no mistake, there will be power outages across Southern California,” said Nancy Ward, director of the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services.

Ahead of the storm's impact, Ward described Hilary as “one of the most devastating storms that we’ve had hit California in more than a decade.”

44d ago / 9:46 PM UTC

Sandbag fill station in Huntington Beach

44d ago / 9:35 PM UTC

Hilary downgraded to a Category 2

National Weather Service forecasters have downgraded Hilary to a Category 2 hurricane with estimated sustained winds at a maximum of 110 mph Saturday afternoon.

Those wind speeds place Hilary at the top of Category 2 and just outside Category 3 strength. NWS meteorologist Philip Gonsalves confirmed Hilary had been officially downgraded, and he noted the storm had gone from Category 4 to 3 earlier in the day.

Rain and wind ahead of the storm was already affecting parts of Imperial County, east of San Diego County, and Riverside County, north of Imperial County, he said.

Those areas could end up bearing the brunt of the storm's rain, he said.

The latest update from the National Hurricane Center continued to warn: "Catastrophic and life-threatening flooding" was "likely."

Hilary's location was about 285 miles south-southeast of Punta Eugenia, Mexico, the center said.

44d ago / 9:33 PM UTC

Los Angeles fire stations offering sandbags to fill

For more information on where to fill up sandbags, visit the Los Angeles Fire Department website.

44d ago / 9:28 PM UTC

Southwest cancels flights out of Palm Springs International Airport

44d ago / 9:25 PM UTC

Senior California official: “It is not too late to prepare”

Throughout the Hurricane Hilary press conference Saturday, senior California officials discussed the severe weather mechanisms in place including pre-positioning high-water vehicles for water rescue teams, preemptively closing some roads, and engaging emergency medical facilities.

They also repeatedly stressed that local residents do their part in preparing for the storm and heeding safety warnings.

Transportation Department Director Tony Tavares recommended residents limit non-essential travel until after the peak of the storm.

“If you must travel and you encounter water flowing across the roadways, do not attempt to drive through it. It takes just a very limited amount of water to wash a vehicle away,” Tavares said.

“Many of our roadways are going to be barricaded with signs,” said Ceto Ortiz, assistant commissioner for the California Highway Patrol. “They were put there for a reason for you to remain safe. Please be smart and do the right thing and don't drive around those barricades.”  

Nancy Ward, director of the California’s Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, shared guidance for residents including “signing up for alerts, ensuring that you have a go bag ready to evacuate should you be asked, making sure that you are in touch with family and friends, elderly neighbors or people with access and functional needs.”

“It is not too late to prepare,” Kim Johnson, director of the California Department of Social Services. “We are absolutely stronger together.”

For disaster assistance, residents can visit websites and the Spanish language companion A template for a personal emergency plan can also be found at

44d ago / 7:53 PM UTC

National Weather Service calls storm “rare and dangerous”

Hilary is expected to move northeastward inland into Souther California as a tropical storm, bringing with it the potential for dangerous flooding and high winds.

"Later this weekend Sunday into Monday, we are expecting a rare and dangerous rainfall event with significant flash flooding, river flooding, mudslides, and debris flows as well as the potential for wind damage from strong tropical storm force winds,” said Courtney Carpenter, a warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

Isolated tornadoes are also possible as well as life-threatening surf and rip conditions along the beaches of Southern California, Carpenter said.

"The worst impacts are expected on the east side of the inland mountains and into the desert Southwest,” she said.

44d ago / 7:48 PM UTC

Las Vegas preparing for Hilary

44d ago / 7:36 PM UTC

Catalina Island off Southern California coast closes bay

An evacuation advisory was issued for Santa Catalina Island, the tourist destination off the Southern California coast.

Avalon, the main city of Santa Catalina, has closed its bay to all incoming boaters in advance of Hurricane Hilary.

“Catalina Island visitors, residents that are unable to sustain without electrical power, and those with medical, access and functional needs, are strongly encouraged to leave the island today, Saturday, August 19th,” city officials said.

Essential services including transportation and shelter will be offered at the Catalina Express Ferry Terminal.

44d ago / 7:15 PM UTC

Californians stock emergency supplies ahead of Hurricane Hilary's arrival

Employees load a power generator as people buy emergency supplies at Costco
David Swanson / AFP via Getty Images
Customers buy emergency supplies at Costco
David Swanson / AFP via Getty Images

44d ago / 6:55 PM UTC

Extreme weekend weather forecast across the United States

Extreme weather is in the forecast this weekend for regions of the United States outside Hurricane Hilary’s path. 

Heat warnings blanketed the central Midwest, with excessive warnings issued from states spanning Minnesota to Texas. 

Air quality alerts were issued for many communities in the Pacific Northwest, including Seattle, as smoke from fires in British Columbia and in Washington state traveled west toward western Washington. Parts of Oregon, Idaho and Montana also faced poor air quality. 

The National Weather Service issued red flag warnings in Washington, Oregon and Northern California, as dangerous fire conditions continued to challenge firefighters. 

The town of Medical Lake, Washington — which is home to nearly 5,000 people — was evacuated Friday afternoon as a wildfire barreled into town, killing at least one person.

Weather experts said Hurricane Hilary’s indirect influence on other regions could intensify fire weather in the Pacific Northwest and also contribute to the heat dome in the midwest. 


44d ago / 6:55 PM UTC

Los Angeles mobilizing for severe weather

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power announced pre-emptive measures to keep the power and water systems running safely during Hurricane Hilary.

“When the power goes out, LADWP’s first priority is responding to reports of downed wires and making conditions safe for the public and our crews,” it said.

Tree-clearing crews will be alert to fallen trees, which are “the most frequent cause of power outages during heavy rain and wind storms,” according to the department. Flying debris and fallen trees can disrupt power lines or other energy infrastructure, resulting in outages. The agency urged residents to not touch any dangling or downed power lines.

Additional field crews are also staffed to assist the Electric Trouble team with any power outages.

On the water front, the Emergency Response Staff is coordinating with reservoir and geology experts to monitor the in-basin reservoirs, which have the capacity to contain increased runoff if flooding occurs, LADWP said.

44d ago / 5:59 PM UTC

Biden closely monitoring Hurricane Hilary from Lake Tahoe 


President Joe Biden is closely monitoring Hurricane Hilary and will be continue to be briefed throughout the day, according to a White House official.

44d ago / 5:43 PM UTC

National Weather Service: Hilary "sped up"

Hurricane Hilary increased its speed and shifted its course slightly eastward, according to a post from the National Weather Service in San Diego. The storm's effects will be most pronounced in Southern California from Sunday morning to Sunday evening.

"Preparations for flooding impacts should be completed as soon as possible, as heavy rainfall will begin well in advance of center," said the National Hurricane Center's Eastern Pacific office.

Dangerous, perhaps locally catastrophic, flooding is expected through early Monday in the Southwestern U.S.

The hurricane is expected to make landfall along the west central coast of the Baja California peninsula Saturday night or early Sunday morning. Then, the system will advance into Southern California as a tropical storm.

44d ago / 4:56 PM UTC

Nearly 20 million in Southwest face rare tropical storm warning

44d ago / 4:32 PM UTC

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis offers support to Californians

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Saturday offered support to the people of California as residents in southern parts of the Golden State braced for flooding.

"Hurricane Hilary is approaching Southern California and is projected to make landfall as a tropical storm," DeSantis, who's running for the GOP presidential nomination, wrote in a post to X, formerly known as Twitter. "In Florida, we know how challenging storms can be and have significant experience responding in their wake — we stand ready to help the people of California in any way we can."

As two governors on opposite ends of the political spectrum, DeSantis and California Gov. Gavin Newsom have frequently clashed over guns, abortion rights, education and immigration. In June, Newsom told NBC News that he planned to launch an investigation into the groups of migrants flown to California, which were orchestrated by DeSantis’ administration.

Earlier this month, DeSantis accepted an invitation from Newsom — who has for months sought to challenge DeSantis face-to-face — to participate in a debate hosted by Fox News host Sean Hannity. 

44d ago / 3:43 PM UTC

Newsom mobilizes California for first-ever tropical storm watch

California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced he was headed to Southern California to monitor and assess any fallout from Hurricane Hilary, which has prompted the state's first-ever tropical storm warning.

“We should never underestimate the power of Mother Nature. California is coordinating with federal and local governments to support communities as they prepare for this unprecedented storm. Heed warnings from local authorities, be ready and stay informed,” Newsom said.

The state is coordinating with community organizations to protect unhoused people, Newsom said. In addition, the state is readying resources, including the California National Guard, water rescue teams and various flood fighting tools.

The Category 4 storm is forecast to hit Southern California this weekend into early next week.

44d ago / 3:01 PM UTC

Nevada Governor Activates National Guard

Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo activated 100 Nevada National Guard members in anticipation of Hurricane Hilary Friday night.

“These Guardsmen will be put in place to provide support to southern counties, which may be significantly impacted by flooding,” Lombardo said in a statement.

“As the state takes the necessary steps to prepare for flooding and severe weather, I strongly urge all Nevadans to do the same. By making a plan ahead of time, Nevadans can ensure that their families and loved ones remain safe amidst Hurricane Hilary.”

The governor's office shared severe weather guidance from local emergency officials.

Most of Nevada is under a flood watch from Saturday Aug. 19 at 11 a.m. through Tuesday Aug. 22 at 5 a.m., according to Lombardo.

44d ago / 2:00 PM UTC

Massive rainfall expected

Hilary is expected to produce 3 to 6 inches of rain, including maximum isolated totals of up to 10 inches, across portions of the Baja California peninsula through Sunday night, the National Weather Service said in a bulletin early Saturday.

Flash and urban flooding, locally catastrophic, is likely, especially in the northern portions of the peninsula.

Heavy rainfall in association with Hilary is expected across the Southwestern United States, peaking on Sunday, and possibly lasting through Monday. Three to 6 inches of rain, with isolated totals of up to 10 inches, is expected across portions of Southern California and southern Nevada.

Trees blow in the wind in Cabo San Lucas, Baja California State, Mexico
Winds pick up speed in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Hilary.Alfredo Estrella / AFP via Getty Images
44d ago / 1:05 PM UTC

Forecasters warn to 'prepare for flooding'

44d ago / 12:20 PM UTC

Storm could produce 'unheard of' rainfall for this time of year, scientist says

Hurricane Hilary could produce up to 10 inches of rain in parts of Baja California through Sunday, the National Weather Service said in a bulletin early Saturday.

“Flash and urban flooding, locally catastrophic, will be likely, especially in the northern portions of the [Baja] peninsula,” the bulletin said.

Even 2 or 3 inches of rain in Southern California would be “unheard of for this time of year,” Kristen Corbosiero, a University of Albany atmospheric scientist who specializes in Pacific hurricanes, told The Associated Press.

“That’s a whole summer and fall amount of rain coming in probably six to 12 hours,” she said.

44d ago / 11:30 AM UTC

Joshua Tree National Park and Mojave National Preserve to close

Joshua Tree National Park and Mojave National Preserve have closed to keep people from becoming stranded amid flooding, the National Park Service said.

“Expect a full closure Saturday pending changes in this severe weather system,” the service said on its website.

It said that campgrounds would be closed, and backpackers would also be prohibited from entering Saturday through Tuesday.

44d ago / 10:40 AM UTC

Homeless urged to 'stay away' from LA County waterways

44d ago / 9:45 AM UTC

MLB reschedules 3 Sunday games in California

Major League Baseball has rescheduled three Sunday games in California because of the forecast for Hurricane Hilary.

Each of the games — Arizona at San Diego, Tampa Bay at the Los Angeles Angels and Miami at the Los Angeles Dodgers — will now be played Saturday as part of split doubleheaders.

“I’m very grateful that they were proactive in the thought,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “It’s certainly going to be an inconvenience for some people that had Sunday tickets, but to at least get ahead of it made sense to me.”

Angels manager Phil Nevin echoed his sentiments. “I’ve lived here 52 years, I’ve never heard something like this,” Nevin said. “Part of me is like, ‘Wow.’ Part of you is excited to see what goes on with these things, but I’ll be honest, the more I read about and hear about it, I get a little bit nervous, too.”

45d ago / 8:45 AM UTC

Photo: Restaurant workers get ready in Mexico's Los Cabos resort

Restaurant employees put up protective wood planks at a restaurant near the beach in Los Cabos resort in Mexico's Baja California.ALFREDO ESTRELLA / AFP - Getty Images
45d ago / 7:45 AM UTC

Navy ships to leave San Diego bases

Naval ships and submarines based in the San Diego area will head to sea until the storm passes, the Navy said.

The commander of the U.S. 3rd Fleet set “Sortie Condition Alpha” today and San Diego-based ships will get underway tomorrow, the Navy said in a statement.

“In order to ensure the safety of our Sailors and ships, we are taking all necessary measures to mitigate potential damage to infrastructure and Third Fleet vessels caused by the storm,” said Vice Adm. Michael Boyle, commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet. “Safety remains our top priority, and putting all capable ships to sea makes it easier for us to manage the situation ashore,” he said.

Ships and submarines from Naval Base San Diego, Naval Base Coronado and Naval Base Point Loma will leave for the sea, the Navy said, and ships that stay will take precautions to avoid damage.

45d ago / 7:45 AM UTC

SpaceX pushes back launch of satellite-carrying rocket

SpaceX delayed the launch of a satellite-carrying rocket from a base on California’s central coast until at least Monday. The company said conditions in the Pacific could make it difficult for a ship to recover the rocket booster.

45d ago / 7:45 AM UTC
45d ago / 7:45 AM UTC

Beyond California: Las Vegas warning of possible floods

While officials in California have been urging people to take Hilary seriously, Las Vegas and other parts of the Southwest also face possible flooding.

A likely scenario in Las Vegas is up to 2.5 inches of rain through Monday, according to the National Weather Service, but another scenario estimates 3 inches or more. The city is under a flood watch from 11 a.m. Sunday through 5 p.m. Monday, the service said.

Other parts of Nevada were considered to have a “moderate” flood risk from the storm, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo said Saturday he was activating 100 National Guard members in advance of the storm making landfall.