Hurricane Hilary continues to downgrade from a major Category 3 storm to a Category 1 storm as it nears Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula and threatens Southern California.

It is still likely to bring catastrophic damage and life-threatening flooding to the region, the National Weather Service warned.

Coastal Mexico is already experiencing the initial effects of the storm, with large waves and strong winds thrashing the Acapulco shoreline. 

One person drowned in the Mexican town of Santa Rosalia, when a vehicle was swept away in an overflowing stream, according to the Associated Press. Four others were rescued.

The National Weather Service satellite shows a real-time visual of the storm, revealing its outer bands impacting the peninsula.

Proactive measures have been taken by the Mexican military and civil protection units, strategically positioned to address potential catastrophic conditions.

The California National Guard is also taking strategic measures in anticipation of the hurricane’s arrival.

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Emergency authorities in Southern California have assured that they are well-prepared to face the storm, despite the fact that it is projected to be the first tropical storm to make landfall in the area in nearly 84 years.

“While hurricanes are a new challenge that we face, unfortunately, our state has had a lot of practice in recent years with other disasters. And so, you know, we’re lucky to have some of the best-trained, best-equipped first responders in any place in the country. And really, our goal today is to lean forward, get resources out there, position personnel in the community so they can rapidly respond, and then just be ready for what comes next,” said Brain Ferguson, Deputy Director at the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services.

Authorities all the way up to Los Angeles are working to relocate homeless individuals from the streets, establish shelters, and make necessary arrangements for evacuations.

The National Hurricane Center says it is expecting a potentially historic amount of rainfall in the southwest and that hurricane conditions are expected to start Saturday night and continue into Monday.

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