Hurricane Marty (2003)

Infobox Hurricane
Name= Hurricane Marty
Basin = EPac
Year = 2003
Image location=Hurricane Marty 22 sept 2003 1800Z.jpg

Gulf of California on September 22, 2003
Formed=September 18, 2003
Dissipated=September 22, 2003
1-min winds=85

Fatalities=12 direct
Areas=Baja California Peninsula, Sonora, Sinaloa, Arizona
Hurricane season= 2003 Pacific hurricane season

Hurricane Marty was the deadliest tropical cyclone of the 2003 Pacific hurricane season. Forming on September 18, it became the 13th tropical storm and fourth hurricane of the year. The storm moved generally northwestward and steadily intensified despite only a marginally favorable environment for development, and became a Category 2 hurricane before making two landfalls on the Baja California peninsula and mainland Mexico.

The hurricane was responsible for significant flooding and storm surges that caused $50.5 million (2003 USD) in damage, [cite web | url = | title = 1er. Foro Regional sobre Protección Civil y Protección Civil y Desastres Naturales | language = es icon | accessdate = 2006-07-04] mostly on the peninsula of Baja California, and resulted in the deaths of 12 people. Marty affected many of the same areas that had been affected by Hurricane Ignacio a month earlier.

Meteorological history

A tropical wave moved into the Pacific Ocean from Central America on September 10. Convection along the wave became better organized as it moved westward, and a tropical depression developed on September 18. The depression moved generally west-northwestward before strengthening into Tropical Storm Marty on September 19. The storm entrained dry air into its circulation as it curved toward the northwest, disrupting the storm's convective structure and inhibiting further intensification for the next two days. Eventually, Marty fought off the dry air and intensified, reaching hurricane strength on September 21.cite web | url = | title = Hurricane Marty Tropical Cyclone Report | accessdate = 2006-07-04 | author = Franklin, James L. | authorlink = James Franklin (meteorologist) | date = 2003-11-25 | publisher = NHC]

Marty began moving north-northwestward in response to a high pressure ridge to the west, and continued to strengthen, reaching a peak intensity of 100 mph (175 km/h) early on September 22. Marty then moved northward at an increased speed before making landfall 10 mi (15 km) northeast of Cabo San Lucas in Baja California Sur later that day.cite web | author = Servicio Meteorológico Nacional | title = Huracán "Marty" del Océano Pacífico: 18 Septiembre - 24 Septiembre | publisher = Comisión Nacional del Agua | accessdate = 2006-08-18 | language = es icon | url =] After making landfall, Marty turned back to the north-northwest, moving parallel to the eastern coast of the peninsula, and weakening to a tropical storm on September 23. Marty then stalled over the Gulf of California after encountering a high pressure system over the U.S. state of Nevada, and further weakened to a tropical depression before making a second landfall near Puerto Peñasco, Sonora, on the 24th.cite web | url = | title = 2003 World Meteorological Organization Report | accessdate = 2006-07-04 | date = 2004-05-03 | publisher = WMO] Marty became a remnant low pressure area on the 25th, and moved erratically over the northern Gulf of California for the next two days before drifting southwestward and dissipating over the northern Baja California Peninsula on September 26.


Fearing a repeat of the damage left by Hurricane Ignacio a month earlier, many residents stocked up on supplies, secured their homes and evacuated to emergency shelters. The government of Mexico issued hurricane warnings for areas of the eastern coast of the Baja California Peninsula and the west coast of the mainland on September 21. Tropical storm warnings were issued for the Mexican coastline to the Colorado River on September 23, but were discontinued later that day. Forecasters also predicted that the hurricane might cause 4 – 6 feet (1.2 – 1.8 m) of storm surge, 8 inches (20.3 cm) of rain, serious flash flooding, and mudslides. [cite web | url = | title = Hurricane Marty hits Baja California | accessdate = 2006-07-04 | date = 2003-09-22 | publisher = CNN] Many schools and tourist destinations were used as emergency shelters and most seaports and airports were closed down.cite web | url = | title = Hurricane Marty slams Pacific coast, kills 1 | date = 2003-09-22 | publisher = Agence France-Presse] Across the Gulf of California, in the state of Sonora, authorities of the municipality of Empalme monitored the status of the Punta de Agua dam, located 20 mi (30 km) upstream of the municipal seat, which threatened to overtop and flood the city. As a result, 300 residents were evacuated to shelters on higher ground.cite news | author = Iván Saldaña, Iván González, Arturo Cerda et al. | title = Miles de damnificados por lluvias en México | language = es icon | date = September 25, 2003 | accessdate = 2006-08-18 | publisher = Noticieros Televisa | url =]


Baja California Peninsula

About 8 to 11 inches (200 – 280 mm) of rain fell in areas of the Baja California Peninsula, with the largest 24-hour rainfall total occurring at Todos Santos, Baja California Sur, where 7.77 in (197.5 mm) of rain fell. Numerous ships offshore reported tropical storm and hurricane force winds, and an automated weather station in Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Sur reported sustained winds of 85 mph (140 km/h) with gusts to 115 mph (185 km/h). Santa Rosalía, Baja California Sur, reported 7.8 inches (198 mm) of rain.

Five people drowned after their cars were swept away by floodwaters while trying to cross a flooded stream.cite web | url = | title = Hurricane Marty kills five in Mexico, Baja California | accessdate = 2006-07-04 | date = 2003-09-23 | publisher = Agence France-Presse] The floods also damaged 4,000-6,000 homes and buildings and significantly disrupted water and communications for an extended period of time. The hurricane's storm surge damaged many boats and yachts in ports along the peninsula's coast, most of them beyond repair. Minor beach erosion was reported at San Felipe, Baja California. As a result, the Baja California Sur municipalities of La Paz, Los Cabos, Loreto, Comondú, and Mulegé were declared national disaster areas.cite web | title = Declaratoria de Desastre Natural para efectos de las Reglas de Operación del Fondo de Desastres Naturales (FONDEN) vigentes, en virtud de los daños provocados por los efectos del huracán Marty, que se presentó los pasados días 21 y 22 de septiembre de 2003, en diversos municipios del Estado de Baja California Sur | publisher = Diario Oficial de la Federación | url = | accessdate = 2006-08-18 | language = es icon]

Filming for the 2004 film "Troy" was interrupted when this hurricane moved through Baja [ Arrests on Set of Brad Pitt Film, 50 Cent Buys Mike Tyson's Mansion, "Wonder Woman" Gets Screen Treatment.] Retrieved on 2007-01-02.]

Mainland Mexico

On the mainland, the largest daily rainfall total occurred on Sebampo, Sonora, which recorded 6.73 in (171.0 mm) of rain. Five fishermen drowned when their fishing boat sank in the Gulf of California, off the coast of Sonora. Also in that state, the University of Sonora suspended operations in its Navojoa campus.cite web | title = Suspende Unison actividades por Huracán "Marty" | publisher = Universidad de Sonora | date = September 22, 2003 | accessdate = 2006-08-18 | url = | language = es icon] Two more people died when a tree fell on a car in Sinaloa. Heavy rainfall caused moderate to severe flash flooding in Sonora and Sinaloa, although damage was not as severe or as extensive as on the Baja California peninsula. [cite web | url = | title = Six dead, several missing in Mexico | accessdate = 2006-07-04 | date = 2003-09-23 | publisher = Agence France-Presse] Los Mochis, Sinaloa, reported sustained winds of 45 mph (70 km/h) on September 22.

outhwestern United States

The outer bands of Marty brought locally heavy rains to extreme southwestern Arizona, but there were no reports of flooding. The highest rain total was 2.25 inches (57 mm) at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in Arizona. Rainfall extended eastward into Texas, where a storm peak of convert|3.09|in|mm of rain occurred in Tankersly.cite web|author=Hydrometeorological Prediction Center|year=2006|title=Rainfall information for Hurricane Marty|accessdate=2006-09-14|url=]

Because the damage caused by Marty was not extreme, the name of the storm was not retired from the rotating Pacific hurricane name lists, and will reused in the 2009 season.

ee also

* List of wettest tropical cyclones in Arizona
* Tropical Storm Marty


External links

* [ Hurricane Marty 2003 Best Track Data]
* [ NHC Advisory Archive]
* [ HPC rainfall page for Marty]
* [ HPC Advisory Archive]

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