The director general of the National Water Commission (Conagua) has warned that 27 tropical cyclones are forecast to form during the 2017 Pacific and Atlantic hurricane seasons, and between three and five are expected to strike Mexican territory. Of the 16 total storm systems expected to form in the Pacific, six are predicted to be tropical storms, four hurricanes of category 1 or 2, and six hurricanes of category 3 or higher. Of the 11 total storms to predicted in the Atlantic, seven are expected to be tropical storms, two may be hurricanes of categories 1 or 2, and two hurricanes of category 3 or higher are expected.
Hurricanes and tropical storms - and subsequent flooding and landslides - have the potential to cause major damage, loss of life, widespread power outages, and travel disruptions, particularly in areas with subpar infrastructure and weak emergency response capacities.
Mexico's coastal regions are must vulnerable but hurricanes and storm remnants can move significantly inland. Hurricane Patricia, one of the strongest storms ever recorded, pounded Mexico's western coast in late October 2015. In August 2016, Tropical Storm Earl and its remnants resulted in flooding and landslides in central and southeastern Mexico, leaving more than 50 people dead.
Hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific officially began on May 15 and runs until November 30. Hurricane season in the North Atlantic officially started two weeks later, on June 1, and also runs until the end of November. The largest concentration of storms typically occurs between August and October.
Individuals present in Mexico are advised to stay abreast of information regarding storms via the US-based National Hurricane Center and/or local media. In the event of a storm, individuals present in areas forecast to be affected should stock up on enough food and water to last several days, follow all instructions issued by local authorities, and distance themselves from the coast and other bodies of water. If an evacuation order is given, leave immediately; otherwise, remains indoors until authorities have indicated that the storm has passed; wait for this declaration, keeping mind that the "eye" of the storm is marked by calm, clear conditions but is followed by the most powerful and destructive part of the storm.
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