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Tropical Storm Rosa to drench the arid Southwest US

Posted: 12:40 PM, Oct 01, 2018
Updated: 2018-10-01 19:40:23Z

Deserts aren't supposed to get much rain, but Tropical Storm Rosa is flipping the script.

Rosa is expected make landfall Monday evening on Mexico's Baja California.

The storm will douse Baja California with 3 to 6 inches of rain, with some spots getting up to 10 inches, the National Hurricane Center said.

As it moves northeast Rosa will also dump 2 to 4 inches of rain on much of Arizona, with up to 6 inches in the Arizona mountains.

Historically, it's unusual for the US Southwest to get pummeled by a hurricane or tropical storm. But "these events have begun to increase in recent years," CNN meteorologist Gene Norman said.

 

Research indicates that global warming contributes to tropical storms getting "more intense, bigger and longer-lasting, thereby increasing their potential for damage," said Kevin Trenberth , senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research.

While there might not be a direct link between global warming and the recent increase of severe storms in the US Southwest, "it is possible that this could be a side effect of climate change," Norman said.

"Warmer oceans are allowing eastern Pacific storms to reach higher latitudes," he said. "This was not the case earlier. It was quite rare for an eastern Pacific storm to even reach Baja California, and this now becoming more common."