On the west coast of Mexico, Hurricane Norma exhibited its formidable strength, maintaining major storm status despite slight weakening.
In the Eye of the Storm
The U.S. National Hurricane Center reported that Norma sustained maximum winds of 195 kph as it hovered about 555 kilometers south-southeast of Cabo San Lucas.
This Category 3 hurricane was on the move, inching northward at a steady 11 kph.
The Baja California Peninsula’s Precarious Situation
A hurricane warning has been sounded for the southern tip of the Baja California Peninsula, emphasizing the need for preparedness. Even a minor deviation from the projected path could see Norma redirecting its course towards Mexico’s western Pacific coast.
Consequently, the region took precautionary measures, such as closing the Pacific coast port of Manzanillo to small craft and the cancellation of some classes by the government of Baja California Sur state.
The exact point of landfall remained an enigma. While there was a possibility that Norma might strike the famous twin resorts of San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas, collectively known as Los Cabos, it also left open the prospect of veering eastward to hit Mexico’s Sinaloa state.
The storm’s forecast appeared complex, with it expected to continue its northward trajectory before dramatically slowing down near the southern Baja California Peninsula.
On the other side of the continent, Tropical Storm Tammy emerged as a force to be reckoned with. Positioned 305 kilometers east-northeast of Barbados in the Caribbean, Tammy set a course moving west-northwest at 16 kph.
With maximum sustained winds at 95 kph, it raised red flags. A hurricane watch was issued for Guadeloupe, a French overseas department, with the storm expected to arrive on Saturday.
An Ongoing Buildup
Tammy’s trajectory was not to be underestimated. As it progresses, it is projected to gradually intensify as it approaches the Leeward Islands over the weekend, potentially reaching hurricane strength by the time it encounters Guadeloupe, Antigua, and Barbuda.
Hurricane watches extended to several other islands in the region, including St. Kitts, St. Martin, St. Barthelemy, St. Maarten, Barbuda, Nevis, and Montserrat.