Hurricane Carlotta Becomes Category 2 Storm
The center of Tropical Storm Carlotta, the second hurricane of the Eastern Pacific season, was 10 miles (16 kilometers) southwest of Mexico’s Puerto Angel shortly before 8 p.m. East Coast time, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.
Carlotta, a Category 2 storm with winds of 105 miles (169 kilometers) per hour, up from 70 mph early today, will move along the southern coast of Mexico between Puerto Angel and Acapulco tonight and tomorrow, the center said in an advisory. The system is traveling northwest at 12 mph, the advisory shows.
The hurricane is expected to weaken as its center moves across the coast, disrupted by the mountainous landscape. The hurricane center forecasts a dangerous storm surge and as much as 15 inches (38 centimeters) of rain that may cause flash- floods and mudslides.
“Those winds buffeting the coast for an extensive period of time this weekend can cause some major beach erosion and major property damage,” Chad Merrill, a meteorologist for WeatherBug in Germantown, Maryland, said by telephone.
The government of Mexico issued a hurricane warning for the Pacific Coast from Salina Cruz to Acapulco. A watch was posted for Salina Cruz east to Barra de Tonala and for the area west of Acapulco to Tecpan de Galeana, according to the NHC.
The hurricane center’s tracking map shows the storm at the coastline by early tomorrow, then weakening to a tropical storm the following day south of Acapulco. It may then turn around and wallow along the shore as a tropical depression until mid-week.
AccuWeather Inc. in State College, Pennsylvania, said it’s possible that as the storm breaks up, remnants could cross Mexico and emerge in the Bay of Campeche, where they could strengthen. Jeff Masters, co-founder of Weather Underground in Ann Arbor, Michigan, called that scenario “unlikely.”
The Quinta Real hotel in Acapulco was greeting guests with complimentary umbrellas, Jesus Vasquez, the front desk manager, said by telephone. The resort is prepared to offer amenities should it receive weather-related complaints, he said.
“We could send them a bottle of wine, or if they have children, we could send them some cookies,” Vasquez said.
More than 100 temporary shelters have been opened in the city as the storm approaches, according to a statement from the Acapulco Destination Marketing Office.
At The Beach
“We’re informing our guests about the storm,” America Anguiano, a spokeswoman for Fairmont Hotels & Resorts Inc.’s two hotels in Acapulco, said by telephone at about 6:30 p.m. New York time. “But I’m speaking from a balcony at one of the hotels now, and I’m watching people at the beach. The sun is not gone. It has stayed.”
Fairmont is allowing guests to cancel reservations for the weekend due to the storm, while encouraging them to reschedule for next weekend instead, Anguiano said.
Carlotta’s hurricane force-winds extend 30 miles from the center and tropical storm-force winds reach out 105 miles, the center said.
“A dangerous storm surge is expected to produce significant coastal flooding,” according to the advisory. “The surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves.”
The hurricane center is also monitoring two other systems. A low-pressure area over the northeastern Gulf of Mexico, moving slowly westward, has diminished since earlier today, the center said. It has zero chance of becoming a tropical system in the next 48 hours.
A cluster of thunderstorms in the Eastern Pacific is about 550 miles southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico. It has a 10 percent change of tropical development as it moves north or northwest, the NHC said.
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