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Hurricane Orlene Expected to Hit Western Mexico on Monday

Hurricane Orlene, a Category 3 storm, approached western Mexico on Sunday night and threatened the region with significant wind, storm surge and rainfall, forecasters said.

The storm was about 10 miles southwest of Las Islas Marías, an archipelago of four islands, and was moving north, the National Hurricane Center said at 11 p.m. Eastern time on Sunday. Orlene had maximum sustained winds of about 105 miles per hour, with higher gusts.

Category 3 storms are considered major hurricanes and have wind speeds of 111 to 129 m.p.h.

Forecasters say Orlene will be a “strong hurricane” that will most likely pass over the archipelago on Sunday night and arrive at mainland Mexico’s coast on Monday.

Orlene was expected to remain a hurricane upon reaching southwestern Mexico but would weaken rapidly after moving onshore, the Hurricane Center said. The system is expected to dissipate on Tuesday.

A hurricane warning was posted for Las Islas Marías and the coast of mainland Mexico, from San Blas to Mazatlán, meaning hurricane conditions were expected in those areas, the center said.

“Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion,” the center said.

Orlene is expected to bring flash flooding and possible landslides across southwest Mexico through Tuesday, the center said. Las Islas Marías could get up to 14 inches of rain.

A dangerous storm surge and large swells could cause perilous surf and rip current conditions, forecasters said.

Orlene is the 15th named storm to form in the Eastern Pacific this year. The season for Pacific hurricanes begins May 15 and lasts through Nov. 30, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Five named storms, including Orlene, formed last month. One of them, Tropical Storm Kay, briefly reached hurricane status, landing on the coast of the Baja California peninsula in early September. Orlene’s status changed from a tropical storm to a hurricane on Saturday.


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