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|Tropical Storm (SSHWS/NWS)|
|Formed||October 19, 2018|
|Dissipated||October 23, 2018|
|Highest winds||1-minute sustained: 50 mph (85 km/h) |
|Lowest pressure||1002 mbar (hPa); 29.59 inHg|
|Damage||$7.05 million (2018 USD)|
|Areas affected||Central America, Southwestern Mexico|
|Part of the 2018 Pacific hurricane season|
Tropical Storm Vicente was a weak and small tropical cyclone affected the southwestern Mexico in late October 2018, causing deadly flooding and mudslides. The twenty-first named storm of the 2018 Pacific hurricane season, Vicente originated from a trough of low pressure that formed within a large area of disturbed weather near Central America early on October 19. Around midday, the disturbance organized into a tropical depression, which prompted the National Hurricane Center to begin issuing advisories. Later in day, the depression strengthened into a tropical storm and was assigned the name Vicente. Despite having only been a weak tropical storm, Vicente developed an intermittent eye-like feature. Unfavorable conditions prevented strengthening until late on October 20. At that time, Vicente peaked with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph (85 km/h) and a minimum central pressure of 1002 mbar (29.59 inHg). A day later, Vicente began to weaken due increasing wind shear before slightly restrengthening early on October 22. On October 23, Vicente weakened into a tropical depression. Later in the day, Vicente degenerated into a remnant low after making landfall in southwestern Mexico, before dissipating soon afterward.
Vicente brought heavy rains in Mexico, which caused flooding and mudslides and killed 16 individuals.
Tropical Storm Vicente originated from a tropical wave located over the Central America on October 16. On October 17, the wave emerged into the Pacific, and deep convection increased as it moved along a monsoon trough. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) noted that an elongated low-pressure area developed to the south of Guatemala later that day. The original low continued to moved west-northwestward an ultimately became Hurricane Willa. Early on October 19, a new trough of low pressure developed to the east of the original low, within a broad area of disturbed weather. The convection became more organized as it moved slowly west-northwestward. At 06:00 UTC, the low developed into a tropical depression. Twelve hours later, the depression intensified to a tropical storm and was assigned the name Vicente. At that time, the NHC noted that although Vicente was a tiny tropical cyclone, it had well-defined convective banding.
Soon afterward, Vicente's circulation was disrupted by moderate northwesterly wind shear as it paralleled to the Guatemalan coast. The NHC noted that Vicente's low-level circulation center was almost completely exposed. Despite this, Vicente occasionally displayed an eye-like feature, and sea surface temperature of 29 °C (84 °F) allowed Vicente to slowly intensity. Late on October 20, Vicente accelerated and turned to the west under the influence of the Gulf of Tehuantepec gap wind and a strong subtropical ridge. The storm reached its peak intensity with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph (85 km/h) and a minimum central pressure of 1002 mbar (29.59 inHg) at 18:00 UTC, while passing within 115 mi (185 km) south of the Oaxaca–Chiapas border. Vicente remained a compact tropical cyclone, as its tropical storm-force winds extended outwards just 25 mi (40 km) from the center.
Vicente turned to the south-southwest on October 21. The storm began to weaken later that day, due to increasing north-northeasterly wind shear, and the low-level circulation center was exposed. Vicente slightly strengthened on October 22, after developed a burst of deep convection developed and a curved banding features. At the same time, Vicente turned to the north-northwest, as the storm moved along the southwestern side of a mid-level ridge. However, this strengthening trend was short-lived, as the outflow from larger circulation of Hurricane Willa to the west produced strong northeasterly wind shear. The deep convection were limited and sporadic, and the storm became disorganized. At 06:00 UTC on October 23, Vicente weakened to a tropical depression, as the convection continued to deteriorate. At 13:30 UTC, the poorly organized system made landfall near Playa Azul in the Mexican state of Michoacán, with winds of 30 mph (45 km/h). Vicente dissipated later that day, over the mountain terrain of Mexico.
On October 23, between 8:00–8:30 a.m. CDT (13:00–13:30 UTC), Vicente made landfall as a tropical depression near Lázaro Cárdenas, Michoacán. The system quickly degenerated into a remnant low after moving ashore. The system brought heavy rainfall to the region, particularly in Oaxaca, that caused widespread flooding and mudslides. Multiple rivers in the state overtopped their banks and inundated nearby communities. A landslide in Santiago Choapam destroyed three homes. Emergency declarations were issued for 167 municipalities, 21 of which were isolated by flood waters. At least 13 people died throughout the state, 6 of whom died in a landslide in San Pedro Ocotepec. Four other persons traveling from San Juan Metaltepec disappeared during a landslide. The Mexican Army and Navy alongside State Police deployed 10,000 personnel to assist in recovery efforts.
Fringe effects from the storm triggered flooding in Veracruz, leaving three people dead. Agricultural loss in Colima were about MX$136 million (US$7.05 million). Due to the unsettled weather produced by Vicente and the nearby Hurricane Willa, numerous oil tankers were unable to unload fuel at ports in Manzanillo and Tuxpan. Combined with the closure of a major pipeline that transports petroleum to Guadalajara, this caused a fuel shortage in Jalisco, with some 500 gas stations being affected.
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