The day after the strongest ever hurricane comes ashore, many are asking what happened. It may not be Monday morning but Monday morning quarterbacks are quite popular among the many who feared the worst from this monster storm. In the end, it came down to location, location, location. The facts about this storm are that it was the strongest ever with the center pressure down to 879 MB, reached max winds of 201 mph and was a few hours from heavily populated cities in Mexico.
Its not just the 380,000 citizens of Puerta Vallarta and Manzanillo, but the thousands of tourists visiting at any given time. Surrounded by ocean, rugged mountains and crop duster sized airports, these exotic destinations are from from idea when it comes to performing mass evacuations in a matter of hours.
Luckily, Patricia split the difference between the two cities and came onshore in a more rural region of Western Mexico. The rugged mountains just inland acted as a cheese grater and tore the once Category 5 storm down to a tropical depression in a matter of hours.
Typhoon Haiyan, Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy are just three examples of much weaker storms doing more widespread death and destruction.
If Patricia would have come ashore just a few more miles further north or south, the aftermath would have been much more devastating.