Hurricane Patrica hits Mexico

Cat 5, be safe amigos

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Hurricane Patricia: Hemisphere’s strongest ever hurricane bearing down on Mexico
October 24, 2015 - 10:46AM

Early vision to come out of Mexico shows the immediate impact of Hurricane Patricia coming off the Pacific Ocean and striking land.
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What you need to know about the monster storm
Hurricane Patricia struck Mexico’s Pacific coast as a potentially catastrophic Category 5 storm on Friday, as one of the most powerful hurricanes in history threatened to wreak widespread damage and prompted mass evacuations.


Mexican and international tourists board a bus to be transported to a shelter, bracing for the arrival of Hurricane Patricia, in Puerto Vallarta.
Mexican and international tourists board a bus to be transported to a shelter, bracing for the arrival of Hurricane Patricia, in Puerto Vallarta.Photo: AP
Patricia made landfall at Playa Perula in the state of Jalisco, Mexico’s meteorological service said. The US National Hurricane Center said Patricia was the strongest storm ever recorded in the Western Hemisphere.

The hurricane is threatening catastrophic damage to property and posing danger to the lives of anyone caught in its path.

Hurricane Patricia, the most powerful ever recorded in the Eastern Pacific or Atlantic Basin, is forecast to bring winds as high as 323 kilometres per hour, or Category 5 major storm strength, according to the National Hurricane Centre in Miami.

This image taken on Friday from the International Space Station shows the Category 5 storm Hurricane Patricia from above.
This image taken on Friday from the International Space Station shows the Category 5 storm Hurricane Patricia from above.Photo: NASA via AP
The “extremely dangerous” Patricia will hit Mexico with life-threatening mudslides and flash floods and may reach into Texas with flooding rain as a record-setting year for tropical systems continues, according to the National Weather Service.

Tens of thousands of people have already been sent fleeing toward the centre of the nation. Cars and buses jammed highways leading from the coastal cities of Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo, and lines of vehicles snaked out of gas stations to fill up for the trip to safety.

Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has warned Australians to exercise a high degree of caution in Mexico as the storm slams into popular tourist areas.

About 400,000 people are considered “vulnerable,” civil protection official Jose Maria Tapia told reporters in Mexico City. Patricia’s landfall was expected between 5pm and 6pm local time, or between 9am and 10am AEST.

“With this type of wind the damage is catastrophic; there are very few structures that withstand this” strength of hurricane, Dennis Feltgen, a meteorologist and spokesman for the National Hurricane Centre, said Friday by phone from Miami.

“The trees are long gone, we’re talking building ripped off foundations.”

Patricia is bearing down on a part of Mexico that is home to Pacific beach resort Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo, the nation’s busiest container port. Manzanillo also has a liquefied natural gas terminal and a rail line operated by Ferromex, a railroad owned by Grupo Mexico and Union Pacific Corp. Guadalajara, Mexico’s second-biggest metropolitan area, is about 201 kilometres from the coast.

At 11am East Coast time, the system was about 201 kilometres southwest of Manzanillo with top winds of 322 kilometres per hour. The international airports in Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Manzanillo and Colima were closed Thursday, Mexican civil protection official Jose Maria Tapia said during a press conference.

“Residents in low-lying areas near the coast in the hurricane warning area should evacuate immediately, since the storm surge could be catastrophic near and to the east of where the centre makes landfall,” said Jack Beven, a senior hurricane specialist at the hurricane center.

Hurricane Katrina, which killed more than 1,800 people, was a Category 3 storm when it reached landfall. While it’s unclear what Patricia’s wind speed will be when it hits land, it’s forecast to be Category 5 level.

Patricia tops the list of the most powerful storms recorded anywhere in the world since 1970, including Typhoon Haiyan, which killed more than 6,000 people in the Philippines in 2013, said Phil Klotzbach, lead author of the Colorado State University seasonal hurricane forecast.

“Allegedly there were a whole bunch of storms stronger in the 1950s and 1960s, but those estimates were likely out to lunch,” Klotzbach said.

“Of course, they estimated Haiyan’s intensity from satellite, not aircraft, so Haiyan could certainly have been as strong, or stronger, than Patricia currently is.”

The system is just this year’s latest record-breaking storm. Typhoon Koppu flooded the Philippines starting late last week and claimed about 40 lives, while Hurricane Joaquin sank the container ship El Faro in the Bahamas at the beginning of the month, killing 33 crew members.

Klotzbach said a record 22 Category 4 and 5 storms have formed across the Northern Hemisphere this year, besting the old mark of 18 set in 1997 and 2004. Reliable data for the entire hemisphere goes back only to about 1985, Klotzbach said.

Patricia grew from a tropical depression on Tuesday to a Category 5 hurricane Thursday at 10pm.

“In terms of intensification rate, it’s certainly one for the record books,” Klotzbach said.

“I think we will need to wait for post-storm reanalysis to get a better idea of exactly how quickly this one intensified, but it’s certainly the fastest intensifier in the Northeast Pacific on record, breaking the old record set by Linda in 1977.”

A Category 5 storm can sweep away buildings, and cause lethal flash floods and power outages lasting for weeks to months, the hurricane centre said. “Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion,” it said.

“My thought is this is a very extreme event, one of the most intense ever observed in modern history,” said Mark Bove, a senior research meteorologist with Munich Reinsurance America in Princeton, New Jersey.

The storm may strike the coast with a 4.5-7 metre storm surge, causing severe coastal flooding as it comes ashore, said Paul Walker, a meteorologist with AccuWeather Inc. in State College, Pennsylvania.

“It is going to hit pretty hard,” Walker said. “It is a Category 5 and we’re not expecting a whole lot of weakening.”

In addition to wind and storm surge damage along the coast, Patricia could drop as much as 30 centimetres of rain across Mexico, the hurricane centre said.

The threat won’t stop even after Patricia degenerates. Moisture from the storm will pour into eastern Texas, threatening a large part of the state – from San Antonio to Houston and as far north as Dallas – with 20 to 25 centimetres of rain, Walker said.

Muy gran viento! Muchos daños.

Much like Noonan and the jalapenos …

When my wife sneazes it is like that, her name is Patricia. Makes me wonder if they knew...
My mother in law is named Patricia. Now it makes sense
323 kilometres per hour


Just say 200 miles per hour…

When my wife sneazes it is like that, her name is Patricia. Makes me wonder if they knew…

Fark me … that farking thing is huge!

Good luck to all our amigos in the peptide labs.

Be safe, el Chapo!

Muy gran viento! Muchos daños.