Aletta rapidly strengthens into a Category 4 hurricane

James Marshall
June 9, 2018

Hurricane Aletta has strengthened to a powerful Category 4 storm in the open Pacific but remains far from the Mexican coast and does not pose any threat to land.

Aletta is the first hurricane of the 2018 season in the eastern Pacific.

Aletta, which became a hurricane on Thursday afternoon, rapidly intensified in less than 24 hours.

Zoomed out view of Hurricane Aletta, June 8. It predicts the storm's intensity to peak late Friday, with maximum winds of 145 miles per hour, just about 10 miles per hour shy of Category 5 levels.

Forecasters expect the storm to make a turn toward the northwest over the weekend before a westerly turn Sunday or Monday. In 2017, the basin saw 18 named storms, 9 of which become hurricanes, with 4 classified as major storms (category 3 or higher).

While it may seem odd for the Pacific's first storm to be so strong, Weather.com meteorologist Jonathan Erdman discovered it's not all that uncommon.

Meanwhile, forecasters are also keeping an eye on a broad area of low pressure a few hundred kilometers (miles) southwest of Guatemala.

An average Eastern Pacific hurricane season produces 15 to 16 named storms, with eight to nine becoming hurricanes and four becoming major hurricanes.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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