Hurricane season isn’t over yet: What’s now Tropical Storm Pamela is forecast to smash into the west coast of Mexico as a Category 3 hurricane by midweek, forecasters from the National Hurricane Center said Monday.
The storm will bring a life-threatening storm surge, flash flooding and dangerous winds, the hurricane center said.
As of 2 p.m. EDT Monday, Pamela had winds of 70 mph and was located about 455 miles south-southwest of Mazatlán, Mexico. It was tracking northwest at 6 mph. Hurricane watches and tropical storm watches were in effect for parts of Mexico’s southwestern coast as well as parts of extreme southern Baja California Sur, according to the hurricane center.
Pamela was forecast to take a turn toward the north and northeast, passing close to the southern tip of the Baja California peninsula late Tuesday or early Wednesday at hurricane strength.
The latest forecast track shows Pamela will hit near Mazatln late Wednesday with winds estimated at near 120 mph.
“The combination of warm ocean waters and light wind shear will allow Pamela to intensify over the next couple of days,” said AccuWeather senior meteorologist Rob Miller.
“Mudslides are likely to occur along the steeply sloped higher terrain and, when combined with the flash flooding potential, will pose a significant threat to lives and property. Travel will undoubtedly be impacted with major delays likely,” Miller said.
Though it’s expected to weaken as it moves across Mexico, what’s left of Pamela could cause flooding problems in Texas by the end of the week, forecasters said.
“Large portions of both central and eastern Texas are set for a soaking later this week as Pamela crosses through the state, likely as a tropical rainstorm,” AccuWeather meteorologist Mary Gilbert said.
Some locations could record rainfall totals as high as 4-8 inches, spanning from central to northeastern Texas into Friday.
Pamela became the 16th named storm of the 2021 eastern Pacific hurricane season when it developed south of Mexico on Sunday evening.