Tropical Storm Lidia became an increased threat to Baja California as it moved closer on Wednesday night. At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Storm Lidia was located at latitude 20.7°N and longitude 109.2°W which put it about 160 miles (255 km) south-southeast of the southern tip of Baja California. Lidia was moving toward the north-northwest at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h). The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h). The minimum surface pressure was 1001 mb.
A Hurricane Watch is in effect for the portion of the coast from Puerto Cortes to La Paz, Mexico including Cabo San Lucas. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the portion of the coast from Puerto Cortes to San Evaristo including Cabo San Lucas and from Tempehuaya to Huatabampito, Mexico. A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for the portion of the coast from San Evaristo to Loreto, Mexico and from Puerto Cortes to Puerto Andresito.
A distinct center of circulation began consolidating in a large area of low pressure previously designated Potential Tropical Cyclone Fourteen-E on Wednesday. Numerous bands of showers and thunderstorms started developing around the consolidating center. There were more showers and thunderstorms in the southern half of the circulation than there were in the northern half of the circulation. Thunderstorms southwest of the center of circulation were beginning to generate some upper level divergence, but it was not well developed. Tropical Storm Lidia formed out of a large low pressure system and it still has a large circulation. Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 120 miles (195 km) from the center on the eastern side of Lidia.
Tropical Storm Lidia was in an environment that was marginally favorable for intensification on Wednesday. Lidia was moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature was near 30°C. An upper level ridge to the east of Lidia was producing westerly winds which were causing moderate vertical wind shear, especially over the northern half of the circulation. The environment around Tropical Storm Lidia is forecast to become a little more favorable for intensification on Thursday. The upper level winds are forecast to become weaker, which would reduce the wind shear. Lidia will still be moving over very warm water and it should intensify on Thursday. The rate of intensification could increase as the core of the tropical storm becomes more organized. There is a chance that Lidia could strengthen into a hurricane which is why there is a Hurricane Watch for part of Baja California.
Lidia is moving around the western end of a subtropical ridge, which is steering the tropical storm toward the north-northwest. A general north-northwesterly motion is expected to continue for another day or two. On its anticipated track the center of Tropical Storm Lidia could reach the southern tip of Baja California by Thursday evening. In addition to gusty winds Tropical Storm Lidia will produce very heavy rain. Heavy rain falling on the steep terrain of Baja California creates the risk of flash floods.