Jul 31, 2013 12:06 AM by Dave Hovde

Why tropical storms in California are so rare

Tropical storm Gil formed off the Mexican coast earlier today. Tropical Storm Flossie hit Hawaii yesterday, however tropical storms have only hit California twice since the year 1900 and only once directly. The 1939 "Long Beach Tropical Storm" happened before a formal naming system was used. A number of former tropical systems have hit California but after losing official designation and strength.

The reasons that California doesn't see organized tropical activity are numerous but the primary reasons are cooler water temperatures in the Eastern Pacific and the steering flow at lower latitudes are commonly east to west which actually carry most storms away from North America.

Meteorologist Dave Hovde explains in this special video clip.



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