Lives and property will be threatened in southern Mexico as a newly formed tropical depression is set to unload torrential rain into at least late this week.
A tropical low spinning south of Mexico organized into Tropical Depression 2-E on Wednesday morning.
The warm waters of the Pacific Ocean may help the depression strengthen into a minimal tropical storm.
The next tropical storm in the eastern Pacific would acquire the name “Beatriz.”
“The depression is likely to make landfall in the state of Oaxaca between Puerto Angel and Puerto Escondido,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Rob Miller said. “Landfall could happen as early as Friday morning.”
“Any wind damage issues would be sporadic and limited to the immediate coast,” he said, “but flooding is the main danger and will exist regardless of any strengthening.”
The strengthening depression would also churn up seas along the coast of southern Mexico, endangering swimmers and operators of small craft.
Miller warned of widespread rainfall totals of 75-150 mm (3-6 inches) across Oaxaca through at least late this week.
There can be localized similar totals in the states of Chiapas, Tabasco and Veracruz as downpours from the depression spread northward.
“Localized amounts to 250 mm (10 inches) will also inundate parts of Oaxaca, especially in the southern mountains,” Miller said.
“The torrential rain in southern Mexico threatens to cause flooding, mudslides and disruption to life.”
After making landfall, the mountains of southern Mexico would quickly cause the depression to weaken to a tropical rainstorm, but flooding downpours may remain and spread to the Yucatan Peninsula this weekend.
The scenario also exists that the depression will stop short of making landfall late this week and meander just off the coast this weekend as a tropical storm.
The duration of the flooding downpours streaming into southern Mexico, especially Oaxaca, could be prolonged by several days if this scenario pans out, exacerbating the risk of life-threatening flooding and mudslides.
It may take until early next week for the depression to move inland finally.
In the Atlantic Basin, where hurricane season officially starts on Thursday, tropical moisture could pour northward to the Gulf Coast this weekend and enhance the risk of blinding downpours and local flash flooding in the southern United States.