A tropical storm off of Mexico’s west coast was upgraded to a Category II hurricane yesterday, earning the moniker “Elida” as it moved west toward Hawai‘i with sustained wind speeds eclipsing 100 miles per hour, according to the National Weather Service’s National Hurricane Center.
At 11 a.m. yesterday, the storm’s center was located “about 655 miles southwest of the southern tip of Baja California,” and was moving west at 14 mph, according to a public advisory.
At 5 p.m., a second public advisory was issued that described the storm’s location as “about 705 miles west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California” and its direction and speed as being 13 mph to the west-northwest.
A “five-day cone” on the NHC’s Web site projected the storm to be within 1,000 miles of the Hilo area of the Big Island by 8 a.m. Monday.
The Central Pacific Hurricane Center will be activated if and when the hurricane crosses the 140-degree west longitudinal line, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration spokeswoman Delores Clark.
However, a wind speed probability table also on the NHC’s Web site predicted that the storm’s strength will likely be dying down over coming days.
It is expected to be categorized as a tropical storm, with wind speeds no higher than 73 mph, by today or tomorrow, and as a tropical depression, with wind speeds not exceeding 39 mph, by Saturday.
Jeff Powell, lead forecaster for the NWS said that the storm will be a “remnant low” by the time it reaches the Hawai‘i region, and the wind speed table predicts that the storm will likely be dissipated by Monday, long before it begins to approach Hawai‘i.
For more information, visit www.nhc.noaa.gov