Hurricane Willa on verge of becoming Category 5 storm off Mexico’s Pacific coast

Vastavam web: Newly formed Hurricane Willa rapidly gained force and grew into an “extremely dangerous” Category 4 storm in the Pacific off Mexico on Sunday, with a potential to make landfall on a western stretch of coast between Mazatlan and Puerto Vallarta in the coming days. The US National Hurricane Center said the storm was “forecast to produce life-threatening storm surge, wind and rainfall over portions of southwestern and west-central Mexico beginning on Tuesday.”

A hurricane warning was posted for a stretch of shore between San Blas and Mazatlan, while a tropical storm warning was in effect from Playa Perula to San Blas and Mazatlan to Bahia Tempehuaya. Willa was about 210 miles (340 kilometers) south-southwest of Cabo Corrientes late Sunday, with maximum sustained winds of 145 mph (230 kph). It was moving to the north-northwest at 7 mph (11 kph), but a turn toward the north was likely during the night or Monday.

The hurricane center forecast 5 to 10 inches (12.5 to 25 centimeters) of rain across parts of western Jalisco, western Nayarit and southern Sinaloa states, with lesser amounts falling as it moves inland. Meanwhile, a weakening Tropical Storm Vicente appeared to be a less potent threat farther south. Its core was about 220 miles (355 kilometers) southeast of Acapulco with top sustained winds of 40 mph (65 kph).