Clark County, Nevada, took preemptive action on Sunday by declaring a state of emergency as Tropical Storm Hilary approaches, poised to unleash heavy rainfall and the potential for flooding in the Las Vegas area, Southern California, and the broader Southwest region.
As reported by The Hill on Sunday, August 20, 2023, the decision to issue the state of emergency was driven by the anticipation of substantial rainfall and the risk of flooding brought about by Tropical Storm Hilary.
County Manager Kevin Schiller underscored the need for heightened preparedness, stating, “In anticipation of the potential for significant rainfall and flooding from #HurricanHilary, especially in rural areas, County Manager Kevin Schiller has declared a State of Emergency for #ClarkCounty to ensure additional resources are available should they be needed.”
Tropical Storm Hilary made landfall along Mexico’s Baja coast on Sunday and is projected to bring torrential rains to Southern California. The situation has prompted the issuance of flash flood warnings for several areas around Las Vegas, as announced by the National Weather Service of Las Vegas.
The City of Las Vegas is bracing for periods of heavy rainfall and strong winds extending through Monday, according to an official statement from the city.
Meanwhile, Clark County officials confirmed the closure of specific rural roads due to flooding concerns. Residents in these areas have been actively obtaining sandbags to mitigate the potential impact of flooding.
Drivers have received a cautionary directive to turn back in the event of flooded roadways, as emphasized by the National Weather Service of Las Vegas.
Notably, Tropical Storm Hilary’s trajectory marks a historical event, as it becomes the first tropical storm to strike Southern California in 84 years.
The Associated Press reports that approximately 9 million individuals are presently under flash-flood warnings in the region.
Weather experts are predicting that Hilary could go down in history as one of the wettest tropical cyclones to affect Western states like Nevada, Oregon, and Idaho.
In response to the impending threat, Nevada Governor Joe Lombardo activated 100 Nevada National Guardsmen over the weekend to provide support to southern Nevada. Governor Lombardo made a public appeal, urging all residents of the state to remain vigilant and prepared in the face of the severe weather conditions expected to unfold.
As Clark County and neighboring regions brace themselves for the potential impacts of Tropical Storm Hilary, the proactive measures undertaken reflect a concerted effort to safeguard lives and property in the face of an unfolding meteorological challenge.