As the summer season comes to an end across much of the United States, tropical storms and inclement weather which sometimes occur during this time of year continue to pose a risk to animals and humans alike. Tropical storm Hillary, the latest of the several storms impacting the western region of America this season, dumped heavy rainfall and brought about strong gusts of winds in the state of California. On August 17th, the storm was reclassified as a hurricane. The hurricane was the first tropical storm to impact the state in 84 years.
On Thursday, the storm was 475 miles south of the city of Cabo San Lucas in the country of Mexico. The storm was projected to produce several inches of rain and flash flooding. The storm made landfall in the southern portion of the Golden State over the weekend, causing major flooding, mudslides, and widespread damage. It was classified as a category 4 hurricane while in Mexico. The rainfall was intense, and photographs show significant levels of “waist-deep” water in many places. Cars were partially submerged, and rocks and other earthen materials were dislodged from the sides of hills and roads due to the heavy barrage of water.
No fatalities were reported, but serious damage was sustained by many homes in several towns across the southeastern region of the state. In one instance in San Bernardino County, firefighters were trapped after debris swept into their station of operations. One family in Cathedral City was forced to evacuate to the roof of their home as water rushed through the interior. Many towns experienced levels of rainfall that matched the previous year’s annual totals. The storm dissipated early in the week. Despite the devastation, many residents remain resilient. A Ms. Suzanne Doucette, who has lived in the region for years and has been a resident of the town of Oak Glen for nearly a decade, stated her willingness to rebuild.