Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Hurricane Lidia weakens after landfall in Jalisco, leaving 1 dead

Hurricane Lidia made landfall as a Category 4 storm late Tuesday night near Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, leaving several injured and one dead after a tree fell on top of a vehicle.

The hurricane continues to weaken as it moves inland over Zacatecas, and all warnings for the Pacific coast of Mexico have been discontinued.

The United States’ National Hurricane Center (NHC) reported wind speeds of 165 km/h as Lidia hit the coast of Jalisco at approximately 6 p.m. local time. 

Lidia then moved over southern Nayarit before continuing north of Guadalajara, with sustained winds of up to 120 km/h. The NHC downgraded the hurricane to Category 2 early Wednesday morning, and expects it to dissipate over the next day.

Authorities in Jalisco and Nayarit reported flooding, roof damage and road blockages. The Puerto Vallarta city government reported that dozens of trees had been downed near the pier.

In a video posted on social media platform X, Jalisco Governor Enrique Álfaro Ramírez said that the impacts of the storm were “not nearly as terrible as they could have been” thanks to the more than 3,000 first responders. “Their work was extraordinary and the outcome was very positive,” the governor continued.

Many roadways are blocked or flooded on Wednesday as the Pacific coast recovers from Hurricane Lidia. (@EnriqueAlfaroR/X)

In addition to minor damages to homes and roads, the hurricane caused several rivers to overflow in the municipality of Autlán de Navarro, flooding the first floor of the regional Autlán hospital. On Wednesday, schools suspended or modified classes in affected areas of Jalisco, Colima and Nayarit.

In its final statement on the storm, the NHC said that “swells will continue to affect the west coast of Mexico and the Baja California peninsula through today…and are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.”

According to Mexico’s National Meteorological System (SMN), heavy rain is forecast today for Colima, Jalisco, Nayarit and Zacatecas, as well as strong winds in areas of Coahuila, Durango and San Luis Potosí. 

With reports from The New York Times, El País, Infobae and BBC

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