Monumental damage was averted this week as Hurricane Patricia narrowly missed the urban centers of Puerto Vallarta, Manzanillo and Guadalajara and then downgraded when she reached the coastal mountains near Cuixmala in Jalisco state of southwest Mexico.
Strongest Pacific Hurricane on Record
With off-shore winds recorded at over 200 miles per hour, Patricia was recorded averaging 165 MPH when she hit land at 6:15 on the evening of 10/23. The most powerful Pacific hurricane on record, Patricia, luckily resulted in considerably less damage than predicted and no loss of life.
Successful Response Plus a Bit of Luck
The Mexican government did an excellent job preparing for Patricia. Residents and tourists were evacuated, tens of thousands in total to 1200 emergency shelters. Peña Nieto’s administration and his Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, have learned some hard lessons over the years from natural disasters and they showed big improvement in their emergency response procedures.
In 2013 when Tropical Storm Manuel and Hurricane Ingrid struck Acapulco and the rest of Mexico’s western coast at almost the same time, the damage and death toll was much more serious. Torrential rains flooded towns and cities, cutting highways and setting off landslides in a national emergency that federal authorities said had caused at least 34 deaths.
How to Use this Information
While Hurricane Patricia may have been much less severe than predicted, it still underscores the need for severe weather planning. For more information on how to prepare for natural disasters, download our white paper, Severe Weather Planning and Resiliency.MissionMode has the tools your team needs to successfully weather a storm like Hurricane Patricia, call us today at 877-833-7763 or schedule a demonstration online.