LOS ANGELES – Hilary is powering up as it aims at Southern California.
A hurricane is not coming to Los Angeles, but the forceful storm with growing impacts now has L.A., San Diego in California and Reno in Nevada – with nearly 31 million people – in the cone of uncertainty. A likely landfall is expected on the Baja California Peninsula in Mexico.
Hillary is positioned in the eastern Pacific, southwest of Mexico. It is expected to move northward toward the risk zone while parallel to the coast for a few days.
On its track to the U.S., Hilary is predicted to impact the supply chain in Southern California over the weekend and early next week, said Jon Davis, chief meteorologist at Everstream Analytics.
"This is noteworthy because it is extremely rare for Southern California to be impacted, in any way, by a tropical system," he told FOX Weather on Thursday. "Impacts include disruptions at the Port of Long Beach and the Port of Los Angeles as well as the metro areas of San Diego and Los Angeles."
Hillary could cause disruptions to transportation and business as well, warned Davis.
"In a very unusual situation, Hilary is expected to bring heavy rain and gusty winds to areas within the risk zone such as San Diego, Los Angeles, Imperial Valley, Tijuana, and surrounding areas," Davis said.
Tropical rains within the risk zone rarely cause significant flooding and disruptions, according to Davis. However, if the forecast remains consistent, such impacts are likely to occur.
"Also, the risk for disruptions at the key Port of Long Beach is increasing given the current forecast," he said. "Thus, interests with facilities and supply chain networks need to closely watch the situation."
Hillary is predicted to become a major hurricane this weekend. It will weaken as it approaches the Baja Peninsula but maintain its moisture as it moves northward towards Southern California. If the current forecast track holds, the risk zone would likely feature 1-4 inches of rain with locally higher totals.
"This portion of the world rarely receives rainfall totals of this magnitude and is likely to result in significant and widespread flooding," Davis said. "Infrastructure damage may also occur in areas that receive the heaviest rains and more severe flooding and mudslides."
Additionally, Hilary could bring some gusty winds to the risk zone, but there will be other disrupters during this event, Davis adds.
"The most significant winds will be farther south across the Baja," he said. "All in all, Hilary will be a storm to monitor closely in the coming days."
While it will be an impactful storm for the West, the FOX Forecast Center said, interests across the Southwest and through the Rockies should also keep track of this storm.