Summer hail storm buries Guadalajara under six feet of ice

hailstorm
© Hail in the eastern area of Guadalajara, Mexico, on June 30, 2019. (Photo: ULISES RUIZ/AFP/Getty Images)

Climate crisis? What climate crisis?

On Friday, France hit its highest recorded temperature ever – 45.9 degrees Celsius (114.6 degrees Fahrenheit) – in the southern village of Gallargues-le-Montueux.

But in Mexico, the weather had other things on its mind. While residents of Guadalajara, one of Mexico's most populated towns, had been enjoying recent temperatures in the upper 80s, on Sunday morning things went wacky. As AFP reports, "At least six neighborhoods in the city outskirts woke up to ice pellets up to two meters deep."

A freak summer hail storm left around 200 homes and businesses damaged, and at least 50 cars were swept away by the ice in hilly areas, explains AFP. Remarkably, nobody died, though two people had "early signs of hypothermia." Yes, hypothermia in Mexico in the summer.

Enrique Alfaro, the Governor of Guadalajara's state, Jalisco, said Civil Protection personnel quickly began digging out vehicles and pumping flood waters once the massive amounts of ice began to melt.

“I’ve never seen such scenes in Guadalajara,” Alfaro told AFP. “Then we ask ourselves if climate change is real. These are never-before-seen natural phenomenons,” he said. “It’s incredible.”

While hail storms in the summer are not at all unheard of, the drama of this one does inspire questions. It's hard to blame one-off weather events on climate change, but scientists have predicted that with climate change, we will be seeing fewer, but more intense hail storms. Call it what you want, but it surely doesn't seem normal to me.

Summer hail storm buries Guadalajara under six feet of ice
Climate crisis? What climate crisis?

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