Environmental

Rina Expected to Become a Major Hurricane Soon


Miami, Fla—(ENEWSPF)—October 25, 2011 – 2 PM EDT.  The National Hurricane Center is reporting that Hurricane Rina is expected to become a major hurricane soon.

Watches and Warnings

The government of Belize has issued a Tropical Storm Watch for the coast of Belize from Belize City northward.

Summary of Watches and Warnings in Effect

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for:

  • the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula from north of Punta Gruesa to Cancun

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for:

  • the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula from Chetumal to Punta Gruesa

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for:

  • the coast of Belize from Belize City northward

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. A warning is typically issued 36 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of Tropical Storm force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area within 36 hours. 

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.

For storm information specific to your area, please monitor products issued by your National Meteorological Service.

Discussion and 48-hour Outlook

At 200 PM EDT (1800 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Rina was located near latitude 17.4 north, longitude 84.2 west.  Rina is moving toward the west-northwest near 3 mph (6 km/h).  A gradual turn toward the northwest with some increase in forward speed is expected over the next 48 hours.  On the forecast track, the center of Rina will approach the coast within the hurricane warning area on Wednesday night and Thursday.

Maximum sustained winds are near 105 mph (165 km/h) with higher gusts. Rina is a category two hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale.  Strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and Rina is expected to become a major hurricane by tonight.  An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter Aircraft is currently investigating Rina, and will provide data on the intensity of the hurricane shortly. 

Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 15 miles (30 km) from the center, and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 115 miles (185 km).

The estimated minimum central pressure is 971 mb (28.67 inches).

Hazards Affecting Land

Hurricane conditions are expected to reach the coast within the hurricane warning area by early Thursday with tropical storm conditions expected by Wednesday afternoon, making outside preparations difficult or dangerous.  Tropical storm conditions are expected to reach the coast in the tropical storm warning area on Wednesday.

Rina is expected to produce rainfall amounts of 8 to 16 inches over the eastern Yucatan Peninsula from Wednesday morning into Thursday.

A dangerous storm surge will raise water levels by as much as 5 to 7 feet above normal tide levels along the immediate coast near and to the right of the track of the center. Near the coast, the surge will be  accompanied by large and destructive waves.

source: noaa.gov


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